NVIDIA-Powered VR Slices and Dices Guesswork Out of IKEA Kitchen Remodels

by Thomas Riley

You can test drive a new car. You can try on a new pair of pants. Now you can put that new kitchen you’ve always dreamed of to the ultimate test — pancakes, at dawn — before plopping down your money with the help of virtual reality.

IKEA kitchen remodel preview with VR
Batter up: VR lets you get a feel for your new IKEA kitchen, before you buy.

As part of a global test pilot, IKEA customers in select locations can put on a head-mounted display to step inside their future kitchen, walk around and see where they’d be cooking up a batch of pancakes to gain a deeper understanding of the intended look, feel and configuration. The goal: ease the guesswork that makes redesigns so challenging.

VR can be a valuable tool in the design and purchasing process. To do that, it needs to be fun. But it also needs to effectively transfer knowledge to the customer about what to consider when planning and designing a kitchen. The more real and accurate the experience, the better.

Paris-based VR design firm Emissive was chosen to develop a platform for the creation of high-end VR content. After selecting products from the IKEA catalogue, it created 3D models of the products using NVIDIA Quadro P6000 GPUs on HP Z840 workstations, then brought to life in Unreal Engine 4.

The Quadro P6000 was created for professional designers who have to create complex simulations for everything from engineering models to VR environments. It’s based on our Pascal graphics architecture and can reach 12 teraflops of computing performance.

For designers working with massive datasets associated with VR, the P6000 lets them create scenes of the highest fidelity while speeding the creative process.

With the IKEA VR kitchen experience, all the various pieces needed to look and function as they naturally would. They achieved that with the Quadro P6000. The VR experience feels very real and natural.

In the store, the experience runs on a VR-Ready Quadro P5000-powered HP Z440 workstation with an HTC Vive Business Edition headset.

The VR kitchen experience runs in various IKEA locations in Belgium, Canada and Sweden until May 21.