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6 restaurant brands park themselves on GM dashboards

6 restaurant brands park on GM dashboards

Automaker’s new in-car Marketplace lets drivers order food, make reservations

Six restaurant brands have taken prime spots on General Motors Co.’s new in-auto commerce platform that rolled out Tuesday, the automaker said. 

Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar, Dunkin’ Donuts, IHOP, Starbucks, TGI Fridays and Wingstop are featured on Detroit-based GM’s new Marketplace, which allows drivers to tap on a dashboard touch-screen console to order food, find the nearest gas station or make dinner reservations.

The new service, available on some existing GM 2017 model Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac vehicles, will offer a growing number of retail, fuel, hospitality, food, hotel and transportation brands on the in-vehicle touch-screens, the company said. The platform will be available in most 2018 models.

“The average American spends 46 minutes per day on the road driving,” said Santiago Chamorro, GM vice president for global connected customer experience, in a statement. “Leveraging connectivity and our unique data capabilities, we have an opportunity to make every trip more productive and give our customers time back.”

Chamorro said GM will roll out more personalized Marketplace features to an expected audience of about 4 million U.S. drivers over the next year and a half.

GM’s Marketplace uses the autos’ embedded 4G LTE mobile connections and a compatible entertainment system. Marketplace does not require a separate data plan, the company said.

“For most retailers and consumer brands the daily commute is the only time not accessible in a consumers’ day,” Chamorro said. “Marketplace gives merchants the ability to more safely engage with drivers and passengers in a meaningful way that provides true value for our customers.”

Marketplace is designed to be used while driving. It leverages machine-learning from real-time interaction data, such as location, time of day and a driver’s established digital relationship with third-party merchants, to offer personalized experiences.

GM said Marketplace’s physical interface was designed to minimize manual interactions, “helping drivers keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel.”

Six restaurant chains are prominent among the first brands available on the Marketplace platform.

Applebee’s: The casual-dining division of Glendale, Calif.-based DineEquity Inc. lets drivers locate the restaurant nearest their car, order featured menu items and make reorders.
Dunkin’ Donuts: The division of Canton, Mass.-based Dunkin Brands Group Inc. allows DD Perks members to preorder and pay onscreen at their preferred pickup location.
IHOP: The DineEquity family-dining brand offers Marketplace on-dash ordering as well as location searches for the nearest restaurant.
Starbucks Corp.: The Seattle, Wash.-based coffee giant lets customers order ahead and use their Starbucks Rewards program.
TGI Fridays: The Dallas-based casual-dining chain lets customers reserve a table.
Wingstop Inc.: The Dallas-based chicken wing brand lets drivers reorder their favorite menu items and pay ahead.

Executives said GM receives revenue from the brands on the platform and some share of each transaction. Customers will not be charged for the service or the costs of transmitting data, they said.

GM’s Marketplace also has partnered with Shell and ExxonMobil for fuel locations, for hotels and Parkopedia for finding and paying for parking spots.

General Motors said it is working with three main platform partners: Xevo in Seattle, Washington; Conversable in Austin, Texas; and Sionic Mobile in Atlanta.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected] 

Follow him on Twitter: @RonRuggless

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