Audi’s virtual entertainment system draws nearer to reality.
Integrating virtual reality into onboard entertainment systems takes another step towards series production as start-up Holoride world to perfect its ‘motion-synchronised voyage’ technology.
6 September, 2021
The spaceship in front of you accelerates sharply and banks hard left. Your own spaceship responds in kind, the momentum pushing you back in your seats you follow, meteorites and space debris flashing past your ship on either side as the pursuit continues. Up and down, left and right you become part of the chase through space, an immersive game experience unlike anything you have ever encountered before, not to mention one hell of a road trip.
Welcome to the world of ‘extended reality’ where virtual reality becomes intertwined with real motion to create a powerful, multi dimensional experience – where virtual content adapts to the driving movements of the car in real time.
First presented at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas in 2019, the Holoride in-vehicle, VR gaming experience is gathering momentum and getting closer to becoming a commercial reality.
This system of integrating a vehicle’s actual movements with action portrayed through virtual reality glasses opens up a whole new world of in-car entertainment, creating a completely immersive experience for passengers. The system unveiled at CES was in co-operation with Disney, where a VR gaming experience based on the character Rocket Raccoon from Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy film combined the action played out through the VR glasses with the movements of the vehicle – dubbed extended reality.
Welcome to the world of ‘extended reality’ where virtual reality becomes intertwined with real motion
It’s just one way in which this emerging technology can be incorporated into the vehicle to create unique onboard experiences
Since then the start-up, which is working closely with Audi, has visited numerous potential game studios to gauge interest and look for potential gaming partners to this exciting and emerging technology.
In order to enable content developers to create additional extended reality formats, holoride published what’s called the Elastic Software Development Kit (SDK) on its privately developed and newly launched holoride Creator Space. The Elastic SDK was developed for the Unity game engine and allows developers to access tools to create immersive gaming experiences and entertainment formats. This ‘Elastic content’ is an entirely new media category made for moving cars that enables a new approach to creating content. From space adventures to streaming the latest movies and tours through historic cities – the possibilities are enormously exciting and are limited only by the imagination of the developers.
The recent Salzburg Festival is perfect example, Audi utilising the technology to afford visitors a unique virtual tour of the historic city, visiting historic sights in an Audi e-tron in real time, while VR glasses offer up historical scenes from the festival’s past.
It’s just one way in which this emerging technology can be incorporated into the vehicle to create unique onboard experiences.
In the future as autonomous driving becomes a working reality, new forms of entertainment like this will become possible while driving – opening up new opportunities to learn and work ‘on the road’.
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