The 109th edition of the Tour de France is officially underway in Europe, marking the start of three weeks of competitive cycling featuring the world’s best athletes.
This year event organizers are offering fans a new way to experience the action using a combination of augmented reality (AR) technology and volumetric holograms.
Developed by Orange in collaboration with Immersiv.io and MATSUKO, Augmented Race 2022 is a unique companion experience that makes use of AR headsets to project a 3D map of the race, including key information regarding each of the 21 stages, over the user’s real-world environment.
Most interesting of all, perhaps, is the volumetric hologram of Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme. Brought to life using MATSUKO’s 3D holographic technology, the lifelike avatar speaks directly to the user, offering event organizers a more personal and engaging way to connect with fans.
“If these past two years have shown us anything, it is that as humans we need each other’s presence. And even though we have come a long way with remote communication, today’s tools are still way too distant,” said Maria Vircikova, co-founder and CEO of MATSUKO.
“Our brain is wired for the third dimension, and we need a sensation of people physically being there. Today we’re excited to announce the debut of MATSUKO’s technology at the Tour de France.”
According to MATSUKO, the Augmented Race 2022 experiment will be available to the public starting in “villages and fan parks.”
While the company does have its own holographic communications software available on iOS and Android, the app is currently in early access and features a less-than-straightforward setup process.
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Image Credit: MATSUKO