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Nissan and Audi provide a NUI auto shopping experience

Today's inspirational posts show how auto manufacturers and dealerships are using Kinect to drive a NUI shopping experience...

Nissan Pathfinder Virtual Showroom is Latest Auto Industry Tool Powered by Kinect for Windows

Automotive companies Audi, Ford, and Nissan are adopting Kinect for Windows as a the newest way to put a potential driver into a vehicle. Most car buyers want to get "hands on" with a car before they are ready to buy, so automobile manufacturers have invested in tools such as online car configurators and 360-degree image viewers that make it easier for customers to visualize the vehicle they want.

Now, Kinect's unique combination of camera, body tracking capability, and audio input can put the car buyer into the driver's seat in more immersive ways than have been previously possible—even before the vehicle is available on the retail lot!

The most recent example of this automotive trend is the 2013 Nissan Pathfinder application powered by Kinect for Windows, which was originally developed to demonstrate the new Pathfinder at auto shows before there was a physical car available.

Nissan quickly recognized the value of this application for building buzz at local dealerships, piloting it in 16 dealerships in 13 states nationwide.

"The Pathfinder application using Kinect for Windows is a game changer in terms of the way we can engage with consumers," said John Brancheau, vice president of marketing at Nissan North America. "We're taking our marketing to the next level, creating experiences that enhance the act of discovery and generate excitement about new models before they're even available. It's a powerful pre-sales tool that has the potential to revolutionize the dealer experience."

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Project Information URL: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/kinectforwindows/archive/2012/08/22/nissan-pathfinder-virtual-showroom-is-latest-auto-industry-tool-powered-by-kinect-for-windows.aspx

Audi reboots the car dealership with Kinect

Another week, another Kinect project. In fact this one has been doing the rounds of my favorite websites for the last week or so  - I’m just catching post conference season.

Audi City London worked with Razorfish to build a revolutionary customer experience that takes the car showroom in to the digital world. The store, near London’s Ritz Hotel on Piccadilly, displays full sized cars on huge displays. Given the price premium in land in London, it’s a smart way to get up close with vehicles without Audi having to pack the store with actual cars.

Of course what caught my eye is their use of Kinect. Customers can configure their vehicle on multi touch displays and have the resulting vehicle shown on the hi def wall sized displays in photorealistic 3D. From there, customers can explore every angle and detail using Kinect. It sounds a lot like the Auto Vista experience on Forza Motorsport and I can’t wait to try it out. That’ll hopefully be possible soon as Audi plans to roll out many more of these digital showrooms.

Nothing can truly replace the full tactile experience of sitting in a car hence the incorporation of an a RFID-enabled USB stick that stores a customers configuration that is then used in a personal consultation area that includes fabrics and color swatches.

from Vimeo.

Project Information URL: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/kinectforwindows/archive/2012/08/22/nissan-pathfinder-virtual-showroom-is-latest-auto-industry-tool-powered-by-kinect-for-windows.aspx

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