the game invites itself to cars

Zapping Autonews Hyundai Ioniq 6 (2022): new electric sedan in video

If electrification and autonomous driving remain at the center of discussion, the 2023 edition of CES in Las Vegas is also interested in content. Nvidia, one of the main players of this show, for example, is improving its online gaming platform GeForce Now, which has more than 1500 games from the biggest publishers and can be played from several terminals (computer, tablet, smartphone, TV). It makes perfect sense to extend the sphere to a car with more efficient screens, both front and rear.

And Nvidia is in a better place to do that because it already provides solutions with chips and software like Drive for on-board multimedia. In Las Vegas, the American firm announced partnerships with China’s BYD, Hyundai and Polestar (Volvo’s sports brand). The platform’s interest stems from the fact that it also offers free games (like Fortnite, Lost Ark, and Destiny 2). Therefore, children will not necessarily cause the budget to burn. According to Nvidia’s head of automotive, Ali Kani, “the combination of computing power, increased connectivity and artificial intelligence is enabling new onboard experiences.”

Sony in ambush

This is also the promise of BMW, which has signed an agreement with the Air Console platform presented by Swiss startup N-Dream. From this year, the games will be displayed on the touch screen of the latest models, the famous Curved Display. These are smartphones that will act as controllers to control the characters.

Tesla has been a pioneer in this field by offering games that are available in a stationary state, some of which can be controlled from the steering wheel and pedals. It also recently integrated the Steam platform, which offers many online games. But Sony can also bring a break.

The Japanese electronics giant, approaching its compatriot Honda, will launch the Afeela brand in 2025. The goal is to offer partially autonomous and ultra-connected electric vehicles. Obviously, games will be part of the in-flight experience. The group, which has a specialized subsidiary (Sony Interactive Entertainment), precisely publishes video games, including, for example, Gran Turismo. And of course we’re also thinking about PlayStation. Moreover, in its teaser video, Sony highlights Horizon Forbidden West, a game that belongs to the PS4 and PS5 universe. Since the Japanese giant also owns Columbia studios, the Afeela brand will offer quite attractive content.

Audi: games that move to the rhythm of the car

Audi HoloridePhoto Credit – Audi

Meanwhile, Audi is the first car manufacturer in the world to offer virtual reality entertainment in its cars through the Holoride headset.

In 2019, the ring brand came to CES to announce this unprecedented partnership. It becomes a reality in 2023 with all eligible models (A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, Q5, Q7, Q8, Q8 e-tron, e-tron, e-tron Sportback and e-tron GT). , provided that they are equipped with the third generation MIB multimedia system.

Connected to the car’s display via Bluetooth, the helmet will actually adapt content distribution to control in real-time. For example, if the car turns right, the spaceship in the virtual world will also move to the right. If the car accelerates, so does the spaceship in the game. Guaranteed effect.

In addition, by synchronizing the user’s visual and tactile experiences, the Holoride headset reduces the risk of motion sickness, which typically affects those watching movies or other dynamic content in a moving car. Among the games offered at the beginning, one of them is specifically designed for the car and was developed by Arvore studio.

The autonomous car awaits

Viewing video games from the driver’s seat can only be done while stationary for obvious safety reasons.

In this regard, remember that Tesla violated the rule and was subpoenaed by the NHTSA in the United States for turning off the screen while driving.

With the gradual arrival of autonomous driving, it will undoubtedly be possible to play or watch content in traffic and on the highway while driving the car’s steering wheel and pedals. But when it’s time to go back to manual mode, you need to disable everything.

In any case, Dirk Hilgenberg, head of Cariad (a Volkswagen subsidiary specializing in software), promises that connected services will proliferate in time with the software-defined car. Since it will be necessary to stop to charge the battery, if there is a queue, it can last for a long time, so we understand better why manufacturers are betting on streaming along with online games.

So Mercedes will offer Zync (a video platform that connects others) in North America. On the music side, the star-studded firm will offer Apple Music a localized audio version, while Sony promises an Audio 360 Reality experience with Afeela.

to summarize

In-car video games to keep passengers occupied while traveling is the new cred of automakers. At least that’s what emerged from the many announcements from the 2023 edition of CES in Las Vegas in early January. Announcements and perspectives from the return of our high-tech expert, Laurent Meillaud.

Laurent Millaud

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