Sony announced a car – a real, physical vehicle with wheels and seats – at CES 2020 and everyone is losing their minds. Obviously, this car, called the Vision-S, is a prototype and you probably won’t be going down to Best Buy to pick up some USB-C cables and a new Sony whip. But the simple fact remains that an electronics and software company is moving into real-world mobility.
“This prototype embodies our contribution to the future of mobility and contains a variety of Sony’s technologies,” said Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida. In other words, Sony wants a seat at the mobility table. In fact, since it launched this vehicle first it could be a major player. But the fact that it released this model at CES and in 2020 before anyone else will set a trend that will force other players to reveal their work.
There is a school of thought that believes the future of cryptocurrency and blockchain happens when robots begin paying robots. These robots might be cleaning our houses, taking care of our elders or driving us around. Cryptocurrency becomes the value transfer medium in this scenario and all of the sensors, computers and systems associated with washing our floors or getting us around connect to the worldwide internet of value and, in the end, supplant most payment methods.
Car manufacturers probably won’t play ball. Car sales and car manufacturers depend on a few things, the primary one being that a human will buy an expensive hunk of steel and spend quite a while behind the wheel. Sony and Apple and Intel and countless mobility startups aren’t harnessed to that antiquated notion. To them, cars are computers. The Sony car is packed with sensors – lidar, radar and cameras – and 360-degree audio with a huge, wraparound screen to entertain the driver. It is, in short, the beginning of a car-creation model that pulls the industry out of the 1900s and into the 2000s.
The electric vehicle is built on Sony’s own platform, which it plans to use in multiple body…