Mercedes-Benz has launched a new collaboration with Apple Music and Universal Music Group for music in the car.
The partnership has been formed on the basis that many recording artists already base their approval of a new mix of a track on how it sounds when played in a car.
Mercedes-Benz, Apple Music and UMG have promised a “new era of in-car entertainment by establishing the in-car audio experience as the benchmark for music production and playback quality”.
The new collaboration builds upon the integration of Dolby Atmos immersive audio in the optional Burmester high-end 4D and 3D sound system offered in Mercedes-Benz vehicles with the latest MBUX generation.
UMG are enabling their recording artists to base their song approval process on how the final mix sounds in a Mercedes-Benz and introduce the seal “Approved in a Mercedes-Benz” as a gold standard of sound. UMG additionally plans to set up a studio environment in Sindelfingen, Germany, based on its Capitol Studios’ Studio C, a global reference music studio for Dolby Atmos mixing.
For the first time available natively in a non-Apple device, the native integration of Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos from Apple Music makes music available in Dolby Atmos easily accessible for customers of Mercedes-Benz and Apple Music.
Cars have become one of the most frequently used music devices. Over 70% of music consumers state they listen to music mostly in a car. Next to this, almost 72% of car drivers state that they cannot imagine a car ride without music, while for two out of three of the respondents, in-car sound quality is important or very important.
“Our collaborations with Apple Music and Universal Music Group are truly unparalleled and set a new benchmark by adding music content and platform expertise to our Dolby Atmos-capable Burmester sound system,” said Ola Kallenius, chairman of the board of management of Mercedes-Benz Group. “Through this industry-first partnership, we are giving our customers the extraordinary in-car audio experience they expect from Mercedes-Benz. Both Apple and UMG share our vision and values and, together with Dolby, we will create a seamless and unique offering for our customers.”
The Burmester High-End 4D sound system uses speaker-like resonators featuring sound massage with surround speakers integrated into the seats.
Fans can now enjoy our artists’ music in Mercedes cars in a way that virtually transports them to the recording studio or live stage
Sir Lucian Grainge
Mercedes-Benz drivers who are already subscribed to Apple Music will gain immediate access to an ever-growing selection of songs and albums available in Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos.
“Sound quality is incredibly important to Apple Music which is why we are so excited to be working with Mercedes to make Spatial Audio on Apple Music available natively in the car for the first time,” said Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president of Apple Music and Beats. “Spatial Audio is revolutionising the way artists create and fans listen to music and it’s an experience that is impossible to explain in words; you have to hear it for yourself to appreciate it. Together with Mercedes, we now have even more opportunities to bring wholly immersive music to our subscribers all over the world.”
UMG is actively encouraging its artists and record labels to produce music mixed in Dolby Atmos immersive audio. As part of the agreement, Mercedes-Benz will provide UMG with vehicles equipped with the Burmester high-end sound system for creative and technical assurances, with the aim for UMG to ensure its music receives the seal “Approved in a Mercedes-Benz.”
Sir Lucian Grainge, chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group, said: “This important step in the history of recorded music is the culmination of years of working together with our partners at Dolby to develop the Dolby Atmos Music format so we can provide our artists with an even wider palette for their creative expression. With Mercedes, a company that shares our passion for quality and innovation, fans can now enjoy our artists’ music in Mercedes cars in a way that virtually transports them to the recording studio or live stage.”
Dolby Atmos will be first available in the Mercedes-Maybach S-Class, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class as well as the EQE, EQE SUV, EQS and EQS SUV.
“In 2021, we launched partnerships with both Mercedes-Benz and Apple Music to bring music in Dolby Atmos to more people around the world,” said Kevin Yeaman, president and CEO of Dolby Laboratories. “Today, backed by a robust and growing catalogue of music available in Dolby Atmos from our partners at Universal Music Group, these efforts come together to give Mercedes customers a one-of-a-kind immersive music experience in Dolby Atmos, setting a new bar for how music should be heard in the car.”