Patent published on December 5, 2023

GM's New Patent Could Make Cruise AV Rides More Fun with Virtual Reality

For anyone who has been in a rideshare, the experience is often identical: the ride from A to B is a practical one, regardless of the service used. While scenery can sometimes provide a pleasant distraction, it can also underline harsh realities - dense traffic, unpleasant weather, socio-economic disparities. For most passengers, the only escape from an uninspiring or uncomfortable journey is through the small screen of a mobile device, an inherently isolating experience. Moreover, this issue also presents a challenge to rideshare companies aiming for customer loyalty - the lack of differentiated in-ride experiences.

Recently, GM Cruise Holdings filed a patent, numbered US11836874B2, offering an ingenious solution to this prevalent issue. The patent suggests augmenting in-vehicle experiences utilizing a technology that grafts virtual reality onto a live external environment, consequently transforming a car ride into an immersive, interactive experience.

According to the details of the patent, the technology could generate 3D images on the car windows, perfectly matching the buildings, sceneries, or activities outside. Additionally, the system could integrate elements from the car's surroundings into an augmented reality, adding an extra layer of amusement and surprise to the ride. Excitingly, the technology could use the car's route to create these experiences dynamically.

Now, imagine looking through the window on the way to work, school, or a road trip and instead of seeing a bland cityscape or dull countryside, you're part of an engaging story or interactive puzzle. Perhaps those dull skyscrapers transform into a fairy-tale castle or a dinosaur park, making your usual daily commute a thrilling adventure.

Undoubtedly, this innovation could revolutionize the commuting experience. It could make rideshare services a preferred mode of transportation for many, by turning every car ride into an enjoyable journey, effectively altering the way we perceive daily commuting. In the long run, this technology could also provide an educational or social platform.

Interestingly, this invention could serve as a significant advantage for autonomous vehicles from a customer experience perspective, particularly for GM's Cruise AV. By utilizing this patent, an autonomous ride could provide not just a ride but an experience.

It's important to note that while this patent paints an exciting view of future commutes, it is just that - a patent. There's no guarantee that such a product will materialize on the market. However, if it does, one can imagine that the era of dull car rides might soon be a thing of the past. Who knows, you might be exploring the solar system or going through a thrilling adventure storyline on your commute tomorrow! The future of commuting looks more exciting than ever.

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