Virtual Reality is here!!! Virtual Reality will be the technology of 198819921995200120152018!! I know, I know. We’ve been hearing this same tired song for decades, but now, if Hyundai and Amazon are to be believed, Virtual Reality might actually be a viable thing.
I’ve been involved with more than a few VR companies over the years. Yeah, it’s very intriguing and the experience can be cool but, for what ever reason, it’s never caught on the way they tell us it should. Strangely enough, one of the areas where VR actually does seem to be working is in real estate. I’ve known a couple of guys that make VR environments for yet-to-be-built condos.
Want to see what your million dollar, 20th floor condo looks like? Want to check out the views? Put on this headset. Want to see what the view on floor 28 looks like compared to floor 20? Click, there ya go.
Whether someone from the real estate industry tipped Hyundai off, or whether they just came up with it on their own, Hyundai has something similar for the automotive world.
Hyundai’s new digital showroom, that they cooked up with Amazon (that hosts all the data and acts as the gateway), offers car buyers the ability to not only compare pricing and reviews, but also book test drives, and check on dealer inventories. Hyundai says this is all part of their commitment to exceptional customer service, and it’s hard not to see that they’re right.
The “showroom” Hyundai set up on Amazon takes you, the prospective car buyer, on a “customer journey,” which sounds like some Grade A marketing gobbledygook. You start with the “brand experience” page that highlights the latest in Hyundai’s technology and automotive innovation. Next, if you want to be really linear about this, you can learn about Hyundai Assurance (that highlights the Korean company’s Connected Care, warranty services, 24/7 Roadside Assistance, and Hyundai Care).
You can then see more details on various Hyundais based on your preferences and buying habits. You can also read reviews, check pricing, set up test drives (in the real world), streamline your purchase options, and even find a local Hyundai dealer.
Interestingly, this is not the first time Hyundai and Amazon have worked together. They first collaborated in 2016 with “Prime Now, Drive Now,” an on-demand program that allowed buyers to book test drives through Amazon Prime Now. On top of this, Hyundai was the first mainstream automaker to connect cars with homes using Amazon Echo and the Blue Link skill for Amazon Alexa. So look for this Hyundai and Amazon partnership to continue.
The new digital showroom can be found here, if you’d like to give it a look.
Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. His forthcoming new book The Future In Front of Me, The Past Behind Me will be available soon. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz