Creating Kando, and Expanding Kando:
Sony's CES ® 2023 Press Conference
CES® 2023 commenced in Las Vegas on January 5, 2023 (U.S. Pacific Time). At the Sony press conference held prior to the event, CEO Kenichiro Yoshida introduced the latest Sony technologies, products, and content, and stated that collaboration with creators who create Kando (emotion) is essential to Sony's Purpose of "filling the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology."
Yoshida explained that the essence of entertainment is the "live" sharing of time and space, and that Sony will contribute to connecting the physical and virtual worlds through technology in the metaverse, mobility and other areas. Speakers from the worlds of movies, games, music, sports, and mobility joined the presentation to discuss the potential for expanding the scope of entertainment through technology. This article covers the key moments from Sony's press conference, together with video highlights.
A Responsible and Sustainable Vision
"2022 was a year when we all desired a return to normal despite uncertain times. What remained constant is the universal desire to experience joy, wonder, and amazement â moments that move people's hearts and connect them to one another. Moments that at Sony, we refer to as Kando." At CES 2023, held live in Las Vegas, Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida took the stage and opened Sony's press conference by emphasizing that people's desire for Kando remains unchanged.
After reiterating Sony's corporate direction of "getting closer to people," he stated that, in addition to focusing on "People," Sony is also considering its impact on the Earth. He introduced STAR SPHERE, a project to provide people with the opportunity to think about the Earth's environment and social issues from the perspective of space. On January 3 of this year( U.S. Eastern Time ), it successfully launched a remote controllable nano-satellite "EYE," equipped with a camera capable of shooting from space.
Moving Creators Forward
Yoshida then spoke of the importance with working with the creators who create Kando as a means of fulfilling Sony's Purpose. "Our Purpose to fill the world with emotion, or Kando drives us to collaborate with creators. Their ideas, visions and stories move people." He then introduced a number of products and technologies that supporting these creators' activities. These included Sony's CMOS image sensors, which help unlock the potential of film and television productions to create Kando; VENICE digital cinema cameras which Sony created with and for cinematographers and were used in blockbusters such as Top Gun 2: Maverick; and the FR-7 Cinema Line camera, which opens creative possibilities in various filmmaking settings with its versatile remote control. He also highlighted Sony Innovation Studios and PIXOMONDO for their work in supporting creators through Virtual Production solution.
Nicole Brown, President of TriStar Pictures, then provided a video message in which she shared how Sony's pictures business continues to support creators.
Yoshida then introduced the film "Gran Turismo," the next PlayStation IP that PlayStation Productions is bringing from the PlayStation platform to the screen (scheduled for theatrical release in US and Japan on August 11). After a video message from Kazunori Yamauchi, the game creator who produced the "Gran Turismo" series, Sanford Panitch, President of Sony Pictures Entertainment Motion Picture Group, Asad Qizilbash, head of PlayStation Productions, and the film's director Neill Blomkamp took to the press conference stage to discuss the film and some of the cutting-edge Sony technology used in its production.
A Creative Vision for Expanding the Possibilities of Live Experiences
Yoshida then returned to the stage, stating that "From live gameplay to shared experiences in theaters, we know that audiences value 'live' events. We want to broaden how audiences experience live events by making immersive experiences possible, even if you are not physically present." He followed by introducing a video featuring Lil Nas X and other creators showcasing how they are exploring the virtual world in the fields of games, music, and sports. Describing sports as the "ultimate live experience," Yoshida then touched on Sony's fan engagement initiatives with Manchester City Football Club, the technology of Sony Group company Hawk-Eye Innovations Ltd, and the AI-based data analysis and visualization technology of Beyond Sports (Beyond Sports B.V.), which was recently welcomed into the Sony Group. In addition, he spoke about Special Reality Display, a new technology in the virtual space that delivers an immersive 3D optical experience, and mocopi, a motion capture system that enables creators to express themselves with a high degree of freedom.
Sony Interactive Entertainment President and CEO Jim Ryan then took the stage and introduced new titles in development for PlayStation®VR2 (PS VR2), the next generation virtual reality headset for PlayStation®5 (PS5™) that takes users into a new era of highly interactive and immersive virtual game play. He announced that Gran Turismo 7 will receive a free upgrade for PS VR2, and that Beat Saber will be released as a PS VR2 title. Also, he brought out Project Leonardo for PS5™ which is the next step in our journey to make gaming more accessible.
Moving Users Forward (Mobility)
"The metaverse is a new space for people to connect with each other. It's made possible through advancements in computing and network technology. Likewise, mobility is being enhanced by these same technological advancements, allowing the creation of an evolved space â a space that moves you." Returning to the stage, Yoshida spoke about Sony's mobility business, stating that the development of a mobility platform based on software is being further accelerated through its collaboration with Honda Motor Co., Ltd. He then welcomed Yasuhide Mizuno, Chairman and CEO of Sony Honda Mobility Inc., who announced the new brand "AFEELA ," along with the unveiling of a prototype that demonstrates a new relationship between people and mobility. Epic Games CTO Kim Libreri then took to the stage and underlined the importance of game engines in new mobility experiences.
Finally, Yoshida touched on aibo and Airpeak as software-defined products that have been foundational to the mobility business. He then introduced Qualcomm as a partner that has helped Sony achieve key milestones in its mobility roadmap. He was then joined by Cristiano Amon, President and CEO of Qualcomm, who spoke on the wide range of collaborations the company has engaged in with Sony until now, and expressed his expectations for creating the future of vehicles and in-vehicle experiences with Sony by utilizing cutting-edge automotive-related technologies.
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