Development engineers from Daimler Trucks have regularly been on the road with mobile vehicle simulators for user tests since the summer of 2019. In the simulators truck drivers can test, among other things, prototypes of future digital operating menus as well as new app offers. Feedback from the testers goes directly into further development work at Daimler Trucks.
The mobile simulators enable the Daimler experts to meet drivers in their usual working environment, such as at motorway rest areas. On the one hand, this ensures more reliable test results and, on the other hand, developers can cycle more truck drivers through tests in a shorter time. The simulations use state-of-the-art virtual reality technology with 3D models and measurement sensors.
Positive feedback from truck drivers
Feedback from truck drivers is very positive. The drivers appreciate being actively involved in the further development of systems they use every day in their daily work. A big advantage of the mobile test labs is that they bring the Daimler Trucks experts to the drivers, not the other way round. By having drivers test in [systems and apps in] their professional environment, their feedback is even more authentic. This represents a huge benefit for the development work.
Tests with 3D glasses and multifunction steering wheel
During testing truck drivers wear virtual reality 3D glasses in which they see the digital image of the truck cockpit and driving situations. In addition, the drivers physically hold the related truck multifunction steering wheel in their hands. The steering wheel and 3D simulation are linked.
Random selection of participants
Experts from Daimler Trucks are present during the tests in the mobile simulators and observe and record reactions and statements of truck drivers. In addition, sensors record the movements of the drivers, which enables further conclusions about the user-friendliness of the systems. The selection of the participants is random and takes place on site at rest areas by Daimler developers. The tests are completely anonymous.