Holoride, the Munich-based startup co-founded by Audi that looks to change everyday travel by injecting VR into the passenger’s experience, is offering free rides in Los Angeles starting this week to demonstrate the technology to the public.

Unveiled back at CES earlier this year, Holoride is a platform that essentially integrates the car’s movement into VR content, letting backseat passengers view video, and play games and experiences using a VR headset.

To that effect, the company announced its demoing its service to the public for free for a limited time, starting on October 14th and going through November 9th. If you’re in the LA area, or plan to be during that time, you can sign up here.

Although previously shown in an Audi e-tron SUV showcasing IP from Disney’s Marvel franchise, this time the start-up has partnered with Ford and Universal Pictures.

Created in partnership with Universal, the spooky game Bride of Frankenstein will be offered to holoriders aboard the new 2020 Ford Explorer; the game tasks you with fighting off creepy creatures of the night on the 10-minute adventure.

Image courtesy Holoride, Ford

One of the advertised benefits of the platform is its ability to lessen the chance of motion sickness, which occurs when a VR user perceives motion that doesn’t match up with what they expect. For this public test, the creators advise users already prone to motion sickness and dizziness not to risk it though.

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The company said back at CES 2019 that it intends on launching its integrated VR system within the next three years using standard VR headsets for backseat passengers. The company maintains that the long-term roadmap could see things like traffic events becoming a part of the experience, i.e. if you stop at a traffic light you could encounter unexpected obstacles in a game or interrupt a learning program with a quick quiz.

Since this month’s public demo will conducted on actual city streets, and not the race track used back at CES, it will be interesting to see just how far the company has come on their mission to integrate their system into real-world driving conditions.

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  • JesuSaveSouls

    Car scale…smaller but more mobile than roomscale.

  • care package

    I’m having a hard time even thinking about the implications here.

    • Alexisms

      You could be being “driven” through a dinosaur valley or on an alien planet. That’s the sort of thing i imagine.

      • care package

        Still seems like something fixed would be better for that, like on a track. How would you match an experience like that to driving in the wild, matching turns and everything. Guess I’ll find out.

        • kalqlate

          GPS / Google Maps integration. Without a predetermined path and destination, a grid-like environment could be produced. Having a friend drive while you issue turn commands to them would aloud a large, discoverable landscape to be explored. WITH a predetermined path and destination, a much more stylized environment could be created, but then exploration is limited. Look for this to be a bigger then when autonomous driving vehicles are perfected.

          • care package

            Oh I see, so whenever you want a fixed VR experience requiring a specific path just call up your friend and say “hey bro, come drive my car on this fixed path”. Ya, I can see people getting into that.

          • kalqlate

            Yeah, kinda difficult when you have no friends. Ya, I can see your problem there.

            As I said:

            Look for this to be a bigger deal when autonomous driving vehicles are perfected.

          • care package

            Ya, I’m a loser with no friends. Feel better about yourself now? lmao.

          • kalqlate

            Yes. Thank you! I needed that sooooo much!

      • care package

        It’s just too impractical. Hate to be cynicle, but it’s just a dumb idea period.

  • MosBen

    I’m not sure if this really makes sense, but I’d be much more inclined to do something like this in an automated vehicle than while I’m being driven around by a stranger.

  • lnpilot

    Barf bag included?

  • The Bard

    Stupid idea. It actually is against VR, making people sick and forget VR.

    • kalqlate

      Stupid? All movements (head movements, bumps, swerves, etc.) captured by the headset’s onboard IMU are reflected in the display. GPS / Google Maps integration allows city streets to map to a stylized virtual environment. Without a predetermined path and destination, a grid-like environment could be produced. Having a friend drive while you issue turn commands to them would allow a large, discoverable landscape to be explored. WITH a predetermined path and destination, a much more stylized environment could be created, but then exploration is limited. Look for this to be a bigger deal when autonomous driving vehicles are perfected. Stupid? Where’s your imagination?