During last times, automotive companies seems really unchained when it’s about augmented reality: during last month only, we talked about Honda’s vehicles/prototypes and Hyundai’s owner’s manual, and today we report the news of the collaboration between Volvo and Microsoft.
The two companies are working on a project that engages them both, since the objective is to insert Microsoft’s famous headset, HoloLens, inside Volvo’s showrooms.
The first demonstration with a prototype took place in Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Washington, where Volvo presented their new S90 mid-size luxury sedan: with the help of augmented reality the automotive company was able to show a full-size three- dimensional holograms of the car itself and cross-sections of its parts, as well as a holographic test-drive demonstration of the semi-autonomous driving system and its safety features.
To do so, Microsoft converted a large room in its headquarters into a mock Volvo showroom; inside the place, the viewers were walked around by an hologram explaining the designers’ choices, while another hologram was making possible to choose among the car features and colors. The visitors were able to choose the favorite features and to view the custom car in front of their eyes. This makes possible to see the vehicle even before it is produced.
The presentation of the product and the choice of colors are just only two little pieces of what augmented reality can do: in fact, other than being a spectacular and innovative way to show the products, it is pretty useful to point out some features that would be difficult to show either way: it is an example the automatic stopping for collision avoidance, new function of the vehicle, hard to demonstrate in a real-life test drive.