One year ago Sony surprised the crowds at CES with the Vision -S, a concept vehicle meant to further the discussion on safety, security, and entertainment. The vehicle has moved from concept to prototype, taking to the roads of Europe for testing.
The car has been driving the roads of Austria since December 2020, according to the company, for technical evaluation. Evaluation of what? We’re so glad you asked.
If the car is technologically similar to what has presented at CES last year, on-board is Sony’s imaging and sensing technologies as well as software regulated using Sony’s AI, telecommunication, and cloud technologies.
The car, which was built in cooperations with Magna Steyr, features 33 sensors, including CMOS image sensors and time of flight (ToF) sensors within the vehicle. These sensors are designed to detect and recognize people and objects inside and outside the vehicle, and provide “highly advanced driving support.”
Each of the two rows of seating in the vehicle features Sony’s 360 Reality Audio system. Bose has similar technology built into the Nissan Kicks.
The crossover-lie car’s front seats have a panoramic screen in front of them that has the ability to display rich content.
Does this mean that Sony will begin to make cars? The quick answer is no. Sony does not appear itching to get into the car business though the products that result from this testing will likely be available to automakers offering additional competition for components in a fast-paced marketplace where the technology is evolving quickly.
The real winner here could be consumers who will benefit from the stiff completion between suppliers and be on the receiving end of better technology because of it.