Porsche app will allow users to record roads and drive it again virtually
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Ever driven down a road and thought "wow, this would be great as a simulation"?
No? Well, Porsche is making this happen nevertheless.
Porsche wants everyone to be able to drive the most beautiful roads in the world, with a new project called Virtual Roads. It'll be an app that allows the user to record a road, by mounting their phone to their dashboard.
Initially, users will then be able to "drive" these roads through their phones, and eventually, it'll be made into a racing sim.
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The initiative is being made in collaboration with Swiss start-up, Way Ahead Technologies and it lets users drive public roads over and over again.
The app will record the entire 3D environment, including trees, crash barriers, and other landmarks. This is actually a big initiative in the simulation world, as this process would typically take 99% more time and resources carried out by big studios.
To digitize roads, big studios use lasers to measure the exact height of the tarmac, which won't happen with the phone app. This will make the roads a little less realistic, but Porsche says that bumps and topography will be incorporated into the resulting track.
“If you ask people what they think is the most beautiful road, everyone has their own, very personal route in mind. The characteristics of the topography are what make a route particularly attractive, regardless of whether it is a unique Alpine pass or a legendary coastal road,” says Robert Ader, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO). “We want to trigger these great memories with a much simpler digitalization process that allows anyone to drive their favourite route virtually.”
Roger Rueegg, from Way Ahead Technologies, says the app could use data from Porsche’s own chassis control system and G meters in the future to make roads more realistic.
“After several years of development work, our software is now so advanced that it can digitalize routes for virtual roads of up to eight kilometres long in less than an hour, depending on how complex the route is,” says Roger Rueegg from Way Ahead Technologies. “We’re also looking at other options and functions at the moment.”