After a lot of to and fro from whether Sony will make cars or not, the news about their entry into the EV market is out. Interestingly they not only want to make cars but make entertainment pods. Sony is seeking further partnerships to make this happen.
First reported by Reuters, it was known that Sony is looking for tech alliances for developing and entering into the EV market. While the news is interesting, unlike other tech companies working on autonomous vehicles, Sony is working on entertainment pods. According to Izumi Kawanishi, the manager who will be in charge of the new Sony Mobility division, “We see the risk of ignoring EVs as greater than the challenge they pose. The coming transformation of cars was in some ways similar to how information technology turned phones into smartphones.”
Kawanishi, who joined Sony in 1986 and headed the AI Robotics team that created the Aibo robotic dog, did not say if the company was going to make any official announcements this year. So far, Sony has still not officially announced when it plans to launch its first vehicle, although as previously mentioned, the concepts it showed appeared to be ready for production.
The first of these concepts, the Vision-S 01, is a sleek fastback type vehicle (bigger than a Tesla Model 3, smaller than a Model S), while the newer Vision-S 02 is a crossover that looks very similar but is slightly larger (in between a Model Y and Model X) and can seat seven. The latter was also spotted by our spies testing out on public roads last year, but at the time Sony had not acknowledged that it was actually pursuing the production of automobiles.
Sony is not the only tech company that wants to step into the EV market, since Apple, LG, Foxconn, the Alibaba Group, Xiaomi, and Huawei have already announced similar intentions. Electric cars are much easier to build than conventional ICE-powered vehicles, while tech features like autonomous driving, infotainment, and 5G connectivity are becoming more and more important for a modern automobile, attracting newcomers into the game. Entertainment could attract a lot of customers as people are also looking out for unique technology. Especially considering how driving in large cities can be time-consuming, entertainment options are something other electric SUV makers are also working on. However, it is usually on the infotainment system, it is unclear how Sony is going to work on their idea.