Audi and Holoride bring virtual reality into cars

Cars today are more and more advanced to the point of being real computers on four wheels. Manufacturers, through increasingly sophisticated infotainment systems, offer occupants increasingly advanced digital services. In particular, he is starting to pay close attention too to functions related to entertainment which, in the future, with the arrival of autonomous driving, will become increasingly important. Last year, Audi had made it known that he was working on a new form of in-car entertainment, with the aim of offering solutions based on virtual reality to the occupants. A work carried out with the collaboration of Holoridea startup founded in Munich at the end of 2018 and in which Audi holds a minority stake.

But we’re not talking about something that will come in the distant future, because virtual reality inside Audi is really about to arrive.

IT STARTS IN THE SUMMER



Indeed, the German carmaker has made it known that starting next summeron some of its cars and, for the moment, only in some countries, rear seat passengers will be able to use virtual reality headsets through which they will be able to access a series of contents such as films, games and much more. The interesting thing, explains Audi, is that the virtual contents will be synchronized in real time with the movements of the car.

Behind Holoride there is a technology that adapt virtual content to the car’s driving movements in real time. For example, if the car turns right, any plane flying in the virtual environment will also take the same direction.

With this approach, the Munich-based startup has created an entirely new multimedia category in which content adapts to driving movements, travel time and route. This particular virtual reality technology has been called extended reality (XR). The goal is to offer an even more complete immersive experience.

The new technology was shown at the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival in the United States where visitors were able to experience it inside a moving vehicle. So, starting from June 2022, Audi will make the Audi A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, Audi Q5, Q7, Q8, Audi e-tron and Audi e-tron GT quattro models that will roll off the production lines (MIB3 infotainment system) compatible with Holoride. Initially, however, Holoride’s services will only be available in Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. Over time, Holoride’s services will be expanded to other markets.

To use this new technology you also need a specific viewer for virtual reality connected to the infotainment system via Bluetooth. A very interesting novelty, therefore, that could open up new opportunities for in-car entertainment. All that remains is to wait for the official launch to find out what content will be made available and how it will really work.


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