German Autolabs, which is developing a “digital co-driver” for cars, has raised €2 million in seed funding from Target Partners and business angels.

The Berlin startup is using AI to develop a speech and gesture recognition software to help drivers stay safe on the road while also interacting with their in-car apps. The new funds will be used to accelerate development and market launch, currently penned in for 2017.

New technology in cars is still causing distracted drivers, explained CEO Holger Weiss. Driverless cars are on the horizon but for now we still need to be in control and focused behind the wheel.

“Only an intelligent software solution equipped with state-of-the-art speech recognition technology will allow drivers to benefit from apps and content, turning each car into a connected car,” he said.

The likes of Alexa and Siri has made speech recognition the norm for many people and this can be applied to the car as well, according to Patrick Weissert, chief product officer.

“Our product is a digital co-driver that—like GPS navigation ten years ago—will soon be indispensable to any driver.”

The market is massive – more than 500 million cars in Europe and North America – which creates a big opportunity for German Autolabs, added Berthold von Freyberg, partner at Target Partners.

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