CES 2019: Audi wants to auto-tain you
Las Vegas – Having hinted at its new collaboration with Disney as a first-of-its-kind media format, Audi has now officially launched its in-car virtual reality (VR) system.
The demo, entitled Marvel’s Avengers: Rocket’s Rescue Run, is designed to be played while the vehicle is moving. Dubbed ‘elastic content’, the VR experience will be tailored to last for the duration of each journey and will be able to pick up cues such as when the car stops at a traffic light or turns a corner, translating this into the game’s narrative. In addition, the content will also be tailored to suit the terrain the car is driving in, so if the car were to be driving through a desert the VR would take place in a similar location.
While Audi played a pivotal role in creating this new entertainment category, it announced that Holoride, a start-up in which it owns a minority stake, will spearhead the project and help to launch it to market.
As the Ride-share Market matures and the mainstream introduction of autonomous vehicles draws ever closer, automotive brands are thinking up new ways to transform the car into an entertainment hub by collaborating with established content producers.
British Army campaign targets the snowflake generation
UK – Its new series of World War I-inspired recruitment posters plays on the common misconceptions of young people as lazy social media addicts.
The new campaign, Your Army Needs You, includes tv ads and striking outdoor posters featuring Kitchener-style imagery. Illustrations of soldiers are coupled with stereotypes of young people, and a reason why the Army needs them despite their perceived shortcomings. One poster reads: ‘Snowflakes, your Army needs you and your compassion,’ while others target ‘binge gamers’ for their drive and ‘selfie addicts’ for their confidence.
‘This generation of 18–24-year-olds gets a lot of bad press,’ says Nik Studzinski, chief creative officer at Karmarama, the agency behind the campaign. ‘The British Army sees a generation full of potential – capable, talented and keen to make a difference.’
Generation Z are commonly labelled as risk-averse and self-absorbed. But the British Army hopes to debunk these stereotypes and build resilience among this generation through this latest recruitment drive.
Soylent Bridge fills the gap between meals
Los Angeles – The makers of Soylent have launched a new ready-to-drink product that is designed to be lighter than a meal and more substantial than a snack.
The release of Soylent Bridge follows the discontinuation of the Silicon Valley brand’s food bar, joining a wider range of plant-based meal-replacement drinks as a lighter, lower-calorie option. At 180 calories per serving, it contains roughly half the calories of Soylent’s original ready-to-drink products. The company says Soylent Bridge responds to consumer demand for a nutritious, convenient option to fill food voids between meals.
‘We know that mealtime isn’t the only time our customers are faced with difficult food decisions, so we set out to create a more complete and nutritious way to get you to your next meal,’ says Bryan Crowley, CEO of Soylent. With this new product category, the company is refocusing its efforts entirely on the ready-to-drink market, evolving its mission and catering for Fastronomic Foodies, for whom food must be convenient yet high quality.
Big and Tiny combines co-working and childcare
California – Santa Monica-based co-working facility Big and Tiny is among the first in the US to offer on-site childcare, allowing its members to bring their children to work.
Designed by Spanish firm Zooco Estudio, the 2,100-square-feet space includes a convenient crèche and play space. The children’s area, Tinyland, offers open play sessions, a pre-school preparation programme and enrichment classes. Encouraging Conscious Play, the playground will include a selection of sustainable, mentally stimulating toys. Big and Tiny promises flexible membership that includes childcare, starting at £125 ($160, €140) per month.
By offering childcare, the space also helps members to balance their personal and professional lives. As the number of co-working spaces grows to accommodate the rising freelance workforce, many are diversifying with services that respond to consumer needs, such as barbers, gyms and daycare. For more about the workplace of tomorrow, explore our Far Futures vertical.
Stat: Gaming accounts for 51% of UK entertainment market
For the first time, games accounted for more than half (51%) of the entire UK entertainment market, according to a 2018 study by the Entertainment Retailers Association. Video games sales totalled £3.86bn ($4.92bn, €4.30bn) in 2018 – higher than revenue from music and home video combined. Since 2007, the UK games market has more than doubled in value.
No longer a niche activity associated with bedroom-bound teenagers, gaming has not only matured but is now driving the wider entertainment industry. To find out what part brands can play in this lucrative market, read our recent opinion piece.
Thought-starter: What are the ingredients to watch in 2019?
From sustainable sources of protein to up-and-coming nootropics, foresight writer Alex Hawkins and creative researcher Jessica Smith highlight five ingredients set to drive new product opportunities.
As consumers continue to biohack their way to better brains and bodies, high-performance ingredients are making their way into the mainstream food sector.
Spirulina has had a place in the health and wellness field for some time, but other types of algae are being touted as more substantial and sustainable, delivering a boost of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and clean protein.
Pili nuts also boast an impressive list of health benefits. Native to Southeast Asia and the Pacific, these nutritious tropical tree nuts contain the highest magnesium content of any nut, helping to regulate blood pressure and lower cholesterol. They are also rich in vitamin E and contain eight essential amino acids.
We also explore the caffeine alternative starting to appear in a wave of new eSports supplements, and a milder, fast-brewing alternative to kombucha.
Read the full listicle here.