Sony and Honda are planning to stick a PS5 in their upcoming autonomous electric car, enabling drivers to enjoy their favourite games even inside their vehicle.
Last March, Sony Group Corporation and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. signed a memorandum of understanding and announced their cooperation to create a new era of mobility and mobility services. The two leading companies have already started working on their latest projects, such as developing and selling high-value-added battery electric vehicles (EVs).
For this purpose, they have established a new company called “Sony Honda Mobility”. The company was officially established in October 2022. It was announced during a press conference in which its Representative Director, Chairman and CEO Yasuhide Mizuno, Representative Director, President, and COO Izumi Kawanishi disclosed more details about their plans.
As they highlighted, Sony Honda Mobility “strives to become a Mobility Tech Company that provides high value-added products and services, and strives to create new relations with its customers, by adopting new ideas through new software-oriented technologies and actively building partnerships with other companies”.
Sony and Honda partnership
This collaboration between Honda and Sony creates many new prospects since the Japanese automaker has already secured the copyrights to Sony’s music and visual material.
Following Tesla’s vision, the two companies are preparing the installation of a PlayStation 5 in Honda’s new electric cars as well as in those that will result from their collaboration.
Speaking to the Financial Times, Izumi Kawanishi argued that the new company is in an advantageous position to capitalize on the new habits of car buyers and the invasion of high-tech gadgets across the automotive industry. He also pointed out that it is “technologically possible” for Sony to integrate the PS5 platform into the new autonomous electric car the two companies are developing so that owners can enjoy their Gran Turismo from the comfort of their vehicles.
“Sony has content, services, and entertainment technologies that move people. We are adapting these assets to mobility, and this is our strength against Tesla,” Kawanishi said and added that the company plans to adjust the way the upcoming EV is built and will “develop a car as hardware that will cater to the entertainment and network we would like to offer.”
Telsa locked the “Passenger Play”
However, it has happened before that a car manufacturer has offered video games available in cars. Both Mercedes-Benz and Tesla have already done that. However, they eventually removed this feature from vehicles while in motion. For instance, Tesla has recently launched a software update to disable the “Passenger Play” function of its touchscreen. At the same time, the car is in motion, and the company has also started an in-depth investigation into whether this functionality encourages distracted driving.
There have been several complaints about the decision by both Mercedes and Telsa to provide this feature to drivers. Minimizing distracted driving has been at the forefront of the agenda for U.S. safety regulators for years, especially regarding autonomous driving and electric vehicles.
Therefore, Sony and Honda should be cautious about how they implement their plan to include a PS5 in their new car, which is expected to be released in 2025, as they already have to deal with the critical atmosphere from the failed attempts of Tesla and Mercedes.