A lot of entertainment companies have been eyeing the opportunities that the world of autonomous vehicles will offer in the future, to be able to deliver a totally new kind of in-vehicle experience. But it’s becoming even clearer that Warner Bros. is striving to be a leader when it comes to providing content for self-driving vehicles, following a recent interview in the entertainment site, IBC, featuring Michael Zink, Vice President of Technology for Warner Bros.
- Warner Bros. is positioning itself to be a leader in the world of autonomous vehicle entertainment.
- A number of other entertainment companies have shown an interest in AVs as an emerging new platform for entertainment.
- Warner Bros. first announced its major plans to explore opportunities in the autonomous vehicle space in 2017 through a partnership with Intel.
A BMW X5 outfitted by Intel and Warner Bros. highlights the advancements being made in the AV space. (Photo: Intel)
The world of autonomous vehicles is poised to create an entirely new frontier in entertainment, one that Warner Bros. is intent on capitalizing on sooner than later, as Michael Zink, vice president of technology for Warner Bros., explained in a recent interview with the entertainment site, IBC.
“While fully autonomous vehicles may still be far out, connected vehicles are in existence today, and many innovative experiences can be developed and deployed without full autonomy,” said Zink. “It’s a very exciting prospect with great potential for delivering new and unique consumer experiences because of many factors working together.”
The Warner Bro. VP says the static environment, the connective capability that already exist in cars and the ever-changing environment outside vehicles will drive an entirely different kind of experience.
A report by Deloitte projects that vehicle-based passengers will consume some 52 billion hours of media content annually by 2030 and nearly 95 billion hours by 2040, prompting a number of other major entertainment companies like Sony and Paramount Pictures to explore future opportunities in the world of AVs. But WB has been aggressively pursuing the space since 2017, after announcing that it was entering a partnership with Intel to explore new opportunities in the sector.
The future of in-vehicle entertainment will feature a more immersive in-vehicle experience. (Photo: BMW/Warner Bros.)
ENJOY THE RIDE
Warner Bros. and Intel showcased some of those collaborative efforts at the 2019 CES show, held earlier this year in Las Vegas, where it demonstrated exciting potential for immersive entertainment in an autonomous driving world with a first-of-its-kind concept car, as detailed in an official Intel press release.
The Intel Warner Bros. car, a retrofitted 2019 BMW X5, featured an experience centered around Gotham City, in which occupants were transformed to the home of DC’s popular super hero, Batman, through a virtual ride and 270-degree entertainment. The interior of the high-tech BMW X5 was equipped with a large-screen TV, projectors, mobile devices, sensory and haptic feedback, and immersive audio and lights to bring passengers on a virtual ride moderated by Batman’s butler, Alfred.
Zink says the unique technology tied to connected and AVs like being able to know the telematics of a vehicle – whether it driving, stopping or turning.
“All this information can be leveraged to create unique experiences for that particular environment, very unique experiences that users can’t have anywhere else – not in a theatre, not in the home, literally nowhere else,” the Warner Bros. VP, is quoted as telling IBC.
WHY THIS MATTERS
The growing interest in autonomous vehicles by companies like Warner Bros. could spark a host of other investments in AV technology, even beyond the entertainment sector. Each and every investment made in autonomous vehicles, outside of transportation and the more traditional tech ideas tied to AVs, will help push the technology forward.