Volvo Cars will work together with Microsoft to jointly develop next generation automotive technologies, the first one being HoloLens augmented-reality goggles.
The two companies revealed today how augmented-reality Microsoft, the world’s first fully untethered holographic computer, might be used in future to redefine how customers first encounter and explore a car, as well as how cars might be bought and sold in the future. In a demonstration at Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Washington, the companies used HoloLens to show off Volvo’s new S90 premium sedan, which will be unveiled in reality at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January. Using the new technology, the companies showed how mixed reality might be used by customers to configure cars in three dimensions, as well as a holographic test-drive demonstration of the semi-autonomous driving system and its safety features.
“HoloLens offers the freedom to create a bespoke experience which customers can steer themselves. Imagine using mixed reality to choose the type of car you want – to explore the colours, rims, or get a better understanding of the features, services and options available,” said Björn Annwall, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Sales and Service at Volvo Cars. He added HoloLens technology might also liberate dealers from more traditional sales environments and allow them to take a car configurator out on the road in small Pop-Up stores, shopping malls or on the high street, opening up new sales channels and introducing cars to a far larger potential audience.
The two companies said they will work together to jointly develop future automotive technologies beyond HoloLens. “We are thrilled to be working with Volvo Cars to reimagine what is possible in car design, discovery and purchasing. We are excited to be at this intersection of technology and human-centric design with Volvo,” said Scott Erickson, Senior Director, Microsoft HoloLens at Microsoft Corp.