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Monday, Feb 6, 2023
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Mitchell Brings ‘XR’ Tech to Auto Repair

Mitchell International is taking auto repair in a new and highly visual direction.

It’s doing so with the help of technology from San Diego’s Qualcomm Inc.

Mitchell serves businesses in the property and casualty insurance claims industry and in the collision repair industry. It is completing initial testing on its Mitchell Intelligent Vision product, which lets people involved in the collision repair process do their work with the help of a wirelessly connected headset. The headset features a camera and voice controls as well as a display that puts computer-generated graphics in the technician’s field of vision.

The headset lays a computer generated image over whatever scene a technician finds in front of him or her. The technology is called extended reality, or XR for short.

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Mitchell said its solution will improve the speed, efficiency and accuracy of the collision repair workflow.

The solution uses a Qualcomm semiconductor, its Snapdragon Mobile XR Platform, which contains a processor, a wireless modem and features optimized for extended reality. In addition, the solution uses a voice controlled headset from Vancouver, Washington-based RealWear Inc. The headset is ruggedized so it can stand up to the auto shop environment.

Aids Every Step of the Process

The solution automates the collection of data for faster vehicle check in. For example, a technician wearing the headset can capture driver’s license and proof of insurance information and vehicle identification numbers with the headset’s camera.

Technicians can also take time-stamped photos of vehicle damage and automatically upload them to Mitchell’s cloud-based ecosystem. Voice activation and the extended reality feature can offer quick access to automaker procedures — in the form of text and diagrams hovering in front of the technician’s eye — during teardown and repair, reducing research time. Prior to check out, technicians can visually document the repair work with the device. The images are then retained in Mitchell’s software.

“Mitchell is committed to delivering innovative, cloud-based solutions that streamline workflows and support proper, safe vehicle repair. With Mitchell Intelligent Vision, we’re again breaking new ground and taking a small but very significant step forward in bringing wearable technologies to the collision industry,” said Olivier Baudoux, Mitchell’s senior vice president of global product strategy and artificial intelligence, in a statement distributed by the company.

Mitchell plans to ship its new solution to clients in the United States before the end of the year. It expects to announce availability in Canada soon.

Mitchell is privately held. It has 715 employees in San Diego and 6,500 employees overall.

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