Sony has announced that it has joined forced with Yamaha in creating what the two have dubbed as the SC-1 Sociable Cart – an autonomous vehicle concept designed specifically for theme parks, golf courses and “commercial facilities”.
The vehicle will be launched sometime this year but it will not be available for sale: instead, its only purpose will be to provide a “new mobility experience”.
The vehicle’s prototype was first developed in 2016 and then, in 2017, Sony created the SC-1 New Concept Cart prototype which was later used in 2018 in collaboration with Kanucha Bay Resort. With it, they provided people with the Moonlight Cruise, a ride experience that allowed the customers to enjoy AR-powered entertainment during night time rides across a golf course in Okinawa.
The feedback they accumulated from the Moonlight Cruise was used to develop and fine-tune the SC-1 Sociable Cart they have now created. The new model sees an increased passenger capacity (from three to five), broader front and rear scope view via image sensors and a longer run time thanks to replaceable batteries.
Sony pushes the idea of image sensors further by preferring them to windows: it provides the riders inside with a 49-inch 4K monitor with a mixed reality view of the world around them while other, 55-inch 4K displays show the passerbys ads. The ad targeting will keep in mind age and gender.
The Sociable Cart will most likely make an appearance before the end of March 2020, in Japan.