More than 20 years ago, Audi’s initial automobile configurator was mailed to intensity business on a CD. “Today, we always use a latest web technologies, thereby leveraging multimedia to assistance a sell network beget fad among intensity buyers for an away configured automobile during a information-gathering theatre on a web or in a showroom,” explained Georg Georgakas, Product Manager for International Audi Websites. “Most of a business use a automobile configurator on a web before purchasing their Audi model.” The configurator is now also used by around 1,000 dealers during internal Audi centers in 27 markets. Whether in a digital or analog world, patron expectations are equally high. 3D visualizations, high-quality automobile images, and minute information have prolonged been partial of reward manufacturers’ customary repertoire. “Potential business need to be means to entrance all as fast and conveniently as probable but carrying to switch between opposite media formats,” pronounced Georgakas, who is pushing a growth of a configurator in a markets.
Transition to a seamless patron journey
The Audi automobile configurator runs on a Amazon Web Services cloud platform. The record uses a bandwidth exam to safeguard that users with suitable network speeds entrance a 3D tide on a website, differently a complement switches to a 2D version. A formidable feasibility check is achieved in a credentials in genuine time to establish possibly a combinations of options a user has comparison are indeed accessible and can be delivered, formed on prolongation information from Audi factories that is updated on a daily basis. The probable configurations and a series of versions are roughly limitless. On average, particular checks take usually tenths of a second. “If business have to wait a prolonged time for feedback, they grow desirous and remove interest,” Georgakas noted. That’s because Audi invariably optimizes a user knowledge regulating a latest approaches and web technologies. In addition, Audi constantly incorporates marketplace information into a system, such as that combinations are now renouned or that discretionary extras are in quite high demand. This means that online users get formula most faster or will shortly accept preconfigured suggestions around a myAudi app.
At any indicate during a pattern process, a user has a choice of saving their comparison pattern online regulating a code, downloading it in a form of a brochure, switching directly to a personal online conference with Audi, or report a exam expostulate on site. Since a commencement of a year, a relating underline has supplemented a information-gathering theatre – formed on a user’s comparison configuration, an algorithm identifies new and used cars from a Audi Germany trade network that are immediately accessible or can be delivered during brief notice and that compare a pattern as closely as possible. “We’re invariably operative to emanate a seamless patron tour within a digital ecosystem,” explained Kranz. “E-commerce plays a quite executive purpose in this context, and we intend to constantly enhance this serve in partnership with a dealers.”
An unmatched visible experience
Reviews from eccentric marketplace investigate institutes demonstrate that a Audi configurator is unequaled when it comes to a visible experience. Everything users configure is presented to them in genuine time in photorealistic imagery – and on any screen. The automobile is displayed in possibly HD or 4K, permitting users to navigate to any detail, right down to a stitching of a leather seats. You can pierce around a car, name colors and options by default, and open all a doors, a scenery roof, or a case with a click. The practical indication can also be displayed in opposite lighting situations and locations – such as in front of a Brandenburg Gate in Berlin or a Allianz Arena in Munich. And users can even spin a pattern LED headlights on and off. All this is probable interjection to a multiple of opposite innovative technologies. At a heart of a complement is Audi’s possess “Automotive Visualization Platform” – or AVP for short. The apparatus generates images and animations for a pattern of any model.
Game engine brings configurator to life
In a background, AVP utilizes a source formula of a Unreal Engine program grown by a obvious US program company. This diversion engine was creatively grown for console and mechanism games. What has been environment new standards in a gaming stage for decades has grown into an bland apparatus during Audi. At a core is a graphics section that creates a tangible picture – it initial takes a 3D indication of a intent and covers it with a surface. These textures can demeanour like vegan leather for a seats or veneer, for example. “The Unreal engine generates images that even take reflections, lighting effects, or light reflections on opposite materials on a automobile into comment but most programming effort,” explained Andreas Sicheneder, CEO of Audi Business Innovation, that ensures a technological fulfilment of a digital patron tour . “Countless designers around a universe use a diversion engine to emanate digital worlds – even for Hollywood movies. Programming a possess apparatus to beget such effects would have been distant too costly.” The diversion engine uses strange pattern information as a source element and totally reproduces a automobile virtually. Huge quantities of information formed on a current tools lists from a prolongation information systems are automatically processed by a program for this purpose. Due to a turn of detail, however, some of this information has to be practiced manually. A Computer Aided Design (CAD) record precisely describes any partial with a specific dimensions. “We’ve simplified 70 percent of a information and cut a primer stairs down to 10 percent. A vast volume of a minute pattern information is simply not indispensable to arrangement opposite versions of a partial in a configurator. After all, we don’t have to uncover a inside of a steering circle or what’s dark behind a trim in a interior, for example,” explained Sicheneder.
Digital Center for Excellence: Audi Business Innovation
Audi Business Innovation creates practical worlds for a code with a 4 rings, among other innovative solutions. The auxiliary with 3 offices in Munich was founded in 2013. Here, some-more than 230 employees from 18 opposite countries rise and exercise digital products and services in a margin of mobility for Audi and other organisation brands. Numerous teams of experts in several fields work on a Automotive Visualization Platform. The peculiarity of a images generated by a diversion engine is now so high that even a professionals have to demeanour closely to mark differences between them and tangible photographs. Another advantage is that a use of gaming record saves substantial time and significantly cuts costs. “We have a ability to beget all of a 2D and 3D views of a automobile in a matter of days,” Sicheneder said. The diversion engine creates 90 percent of a images and animations for a configurator. In a past, this compulsory elaborate print shoots and film productions that took place around a globe. If something about a product changes today, a usually thing a group needs to do is import a latest CAD data.
Agile program development
A sum of around 100 experts worldwide are concerned in a encouragement of a configurator for Audi. “We’ve changed to extensively automate program growth and decentralize a online configurator step by step,” Michael Kanz emphasizes. They also rise particular functionalities on their possess and creation them accessible to a network – but Ingolstadt carrying to lift all a strings. Customers advantage from discerning updates and a ceaselessly optimized user experience. Agile partnership and record like a diversion engine therefore illustrate once again how Audi is changing with a times and consistently tailoring digitalization of all points of hit to a needs and expectations of several aim groups in a offline and online world.