Gaming is more popular now than it has ever been before.
Gamers are able to win millions of dollars at Esports gaming, showing that it’s a growing industry that largely appeals to a younger demographic. However, the technology behind the gaming boom can be used to help innovate in other industries as well.
The auto industry is one industry that can benefit from gaming innovations to advance its own technology.
How Ford is using gaming to build the company
Automotive Worldwrites that Ford is using gaming to help build the company for the future.
For years, Ford has played a big part in automotive video games, making sure its real-life vehicles are faithfully replicated in pixels. Now, Ford is applying the lessons it has learned from its involvement in gaming to improve its own processes.
Like many companies, the pandemic forced Ford to use remote work to get things done, which leads to obstacles.
Ford has installed giant LED walls, called Powerwalls, at two of its design studios. Using video conferencing and virtual reality, the team is shown parts of the walls allowing them to collaborate and provide feedback and make changes in real-time.
Gaming has helped build Ford vehicles
To take a different approach to design and look to future trends, Ford used gamers to help build a virtual gaming race car.
Nearly 250,000 esports fans participated in online polls to help shape the design and features of the Team Fordzilla P1. The car's interior focuses on gaming essentials, including speed, lap times, and race position. All elements Ford is looking to apply this method to real-life vehicles.
As part of the human-centric approach to design, Team Fordzilla is hoping to work with gamers and Ford's designers to create a new Supervan.
Ford imagines what a performance model of future Transit vans could look like. The gaming-focused design could be the future of automobiles as young gamers grow up and get more into real-world driving.
How does gaming help in the creative process?
Ford engineersbuild simulations that allow the company to get customer feedback via virtual clinics.
In these sessions, the company learns what types of new technologies consumers find most useful. Ford's designers are also able to use animations to create virtual vehicle prototypes to show participants what upcoming models may look like.
For example, Ford engineers wanted to know if drivers preferred having to hold down an automated parking button or if they'd rather just press it once.
So the company created a short online video game in which the participants executed different parking maneuvers. They found out that 88% of those in the study preferred the single button press, which could lead to changes in Ford's "Active Park Assist" function in its vehicles.
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