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Volvo Aims to Use VR to Design Cars

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May 30, 2019—Volvo and Varjo, a Finnish developer of augmented-reality headsets, want to include more technology in the process of designing a car, reported Digital Trends.

Automakers like Ford and Nissan have used virtual-reality headsets to let designers work on cars digitally, but Volvo is taking things a step further. The Swedish automaker claims testers can wear one of Varjo’s headsets while driving a real car, overlaying virtual elements on top of what the driver actually sees. 

This blending of virtual and real worlds is possible thanks to Varjo’s new XR-1 headset, according to Volvo. The XR-1’s high-definition resolution is better than any other headset currently available, making it the only one suitable for this application, Volvo claims. 

The XR-1 headset also has eye-tracking tech, which Volvo hopes to use to measure driver distraction. Monitoring where a driver looks can help determine how customers will use new features and whether those features will cause distraction, according to Volvo. Volvo already committed to adding driver-facing cameras to its production cars in order to combat distracted and intoxicated driving.

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