Fiat is hoping to leverage Google’s Project Tango augmented reality system in order to help sell its cars, CNET reports.
Augmented reality differs from virtual reality in that it interacts with the real-world rather than virtually transporting you to an entirely different one. Fiat has used the technology to virtually display an interactive, real-time rendering of a car on a tablet or device, which allows the user to change the exterior and interior colors, options, and even open the trunk, doors and hood.
Allowing customers to view their cars virtually is “the future of the dealership,” Accenture, the consulting firm that co-developed the technology alongside Google, told CNET on the floor of the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona. The main benefit, the company says, is that customers will be able to view colors and options on a car that may not be stocked in the dealership. Down the road, customers could use the technology in their home to see if a new car would fit in their garage, for example.
Check out the demonstration of the technology in the video below. Accenture is preparing for a phone launch of the application this summer, but did not commit to an exact release date. The application will be free in order to promote the use of the app and to promote the Fiat 500.