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App gives Mercedes-Benz owners an out-of-car experience

Mercedes-Benz releases version 2.0 of its mbrace iPhone app.

mbrace vehicle finder
The mbrace app helps Mercedes-Benz owners find their cars. Mercedes-Benz

A new iPhone app is giving Mercedes-Benz owners care and attention from the luxury automaker even when they aren't in their cars. Mercedes-Benz's telematics service provider, Hughes Telematics, has released version 2.0 of its mbrace iPhone app, which lets users ask for local recommendations through a concierge service in their cars or just walking down the street.

Many automakers offer some sort of telematics service, the most well-known being GM's OnStar. And most of these services let users contact an operator through an in-car connection and ask for directions, roadside assistance, or recommendations for local restaurants or hotels. Mercedes-Benz's new iPhone app lets drivers take these services with them outside of the car.

Using both the iPhone's and the car's GPS, the mbrace app can also show lost users where they parked their car. Other services include remotely locking and unlocking car doors, and locating the nearest Mercedes-Benz dealer.

People with more than one Mercedes-Benz car can create multiple accounts in the mbrace iPhone app to access services specific to each vehicle.