How XR is Transforming how Companies Design and Visualize Products

with Ford Motor Company, BASF, Jacobs Engineering Group and More

Kathryn Bloxham
Sep 23, 2019 · 3 min read

Whereas consumer uptake of extended reality (XR) has plateaued after its initial boom, among the fields undergoing the greatest transformation are product design and visualization. Thanks to the ability to intuitively visualize, design and modify products with ease, design and engineering have emerged as the second most popular applications of XR (after training and education), being used by 38% of firms in 2018.

Examples of successful XR applications are increasingly making headlines; exploring how the technology could ameliorate special reasoning for engineers, Accenture Labs built a proof-of-concept car seat, placing design files into a headset so that viewers could understand how the design would render in the real world. Any changes to the CAD design were instantly replicated through the headset as a 3D Digital Double, allowing for easier, safer and faster modification of the product.

AR also works well as a replacement for physical manuals, allowing technicians to focus on their tasks but with the information they need available. For example, engineers at NASA are currently using augmented reality (AR) headsets to build spacecraft, with models of parts and labels being overlaid on completed sections of the spacecraft and information like torqueing instructions being displayed in the relevant places. Lockheed is similarly extending its use of AR after seeing some dramatic effects during testing after finding that technicians needed far less time to get familiar with a new task or to understand and perform processes like drilling holes and twisting fasteners.

However, while XR may be the natural next step for product designers and engineers, its novelty and expense mean there are no accepted best practices and there are plenty of opportunities to overspend and underdeliver. But the stakes are high. The successful deployment of XR now could be the difference between success and failure in the future.

On July 24th, an expert panel of speakers addressed the topic How XR is Changing the Way Companies Visualize and Design Products in a live webinar. Moderator Tyler Worden (Managing Partner, 4D Pipeline) was joined by Ricardo Rodriguez (Global Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) Specialist, BASF), Kurt Maldovah (Director of Virtual Design and Construction, Jacobs Engineering Group), Michael Smith (Digital Design, Tool Development Manager, Ford Motor Company) and Micah Wells (Global Mining and Metals Innovation and Technology Lead, Fluor Corporation). The webinar explored the latest applications of XR that are transforming the fields of product engineering, design and visualization, how companies can extract the greatest ROI from XR, and where future opportunities may lie.

Get the full webinar recordings here for exclusive insights into:

· Which industries are currently using XR for design & visualization, and how they are applying the technologies

· Where VR and/or AR/MR are best suited and the benefits that companies are seeing

· How companies are scaling and integrating XR into daily workflows and what the challenges are

· What is a realistic ROI and how it is measured?

Get the full webinar recordings here

This webinar was run in association with VR Intelligence’s upcoming VRX Conference & Expo, taking place December 12–13, 2019, at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport Hotel. Expecting more than 600 senior attendees from across gaming, entertainment, healthcare, retail, automotive industries and more, VRX is the world’s premier B2B immersive tech event for those wishing to use XR to boost ROI, propel their business forward and engage consumers through immersive, innovative experiences. For more information, please visit the website at or contact Kathryn Bloxham directly.

Kathryn Bloxham
VR Intelligence / VRX
T: +44 (0)207 375 7567

Kathryn Bloxham

Written by

Head of Innovation at VRX — #VRX2019 (Dec 12–13, San Francisco)

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