When most people think about virtual reality they think about games and entertainment, but we know it’s so much more. From an artistic vehicle to a tool for overcoming fears, there are many uses for this cool technology.
For BMW, that use is to help design their latest cars. The company announced that they are using the HTC Vive to help engineers prototype and design vehicles. VR is used to help the engineers get a virtual perspective inside a vehicle to judge how well they can see over a dashboard and steering wheel, or the visibility of other windows throughout a car.
To be clear, BMW has always used virtual reality technology to assist in this cause, but they’ve had to go to specialized facilities, something that cost them a lot of time and money. With the HTC Vive, BMW can draw up and test new designs fast, and they don’t have to pay for transporting engineers to a facility or wait for appointments before they can test the latest modifications to their design.
The HTC Vive allows BMW to equip more engineers with VR tools at their own in-house workstations, something they say will be deployed in the note-too-distant future. BMW makes use of a physical vehicle pod that can make engine needs and vibrate to simulate being inside a real car. It’s safe, fast, and cheap, and those are the good points companies like to hear in their day-to-day.