News 12.01.2023

Need to Know

Sony and Honda co-create a car that doubles as an entertainment hub, Oobli pioneers chocolate using sweet proteins and deploying existing tech could slash the cost of sustainable development.

Sony and Honda co-create a car that doubles as an entertainment hub

Afeela by Sony and Honda, US

US – Afeela, a new joint venture by Sony and Honda, is shaking up the automotive space by envisaging the car of tomorrow, labelled as a ‘moving entertainment space’.

Set to hit the market in 2025, the Afeela EV merges Honda’s automotive expertise with Sony’s sensor technology. The result is an entirely electric vehicle boasting a sleek design and prioritising entertainment and interaction for passengers and driver alike thanks to automatic driving settings powered by 45 sensors and cameras.

Inside, the car is designed as an entertainment space, with features including interfaces developed by gaming company Epic Games, screens for movie streaming and AR driving assistance graphics.

‘We want to think out of the box to revisit the underlying philosophy of vehicle design,’ says Yasuhide Mizuno, chairman and CEO of Sony Honda Mobility. ‘In addition to movies, games and music, we envisage a new in-cabin experience using our expertise of UX and UI technologies.’

The purpose of a car has evolved beyond mobility, and consumers are expecting new features and added benefits from their vehicles – whether it is in the shape of Auto Entertainment, or workspace car concepts.

Strategic opportunity

Mobility and entertainment are two increasingly intertwined sectors, opening up a market for hybrid offerings serving these two purposes

Oobli pioneers chocolate using sweet proteins

US – As the market for healthier snacks grows, food tech company Joywell has been rebranded as Oobli, moving forward its long-standing mission to introduce healthy sweetness to the food market using sweet proteins as a substitute for sugar.

Founded in 2014, it pioneered the ability to recreate the sweet proteins found in fruit identically, affordably and at scale. As Oobli, the brand has now unveiled its first food products, the world’s first sweet protein-powered chocolate bars. The name Oobli was inspired by the oubli fruit, which is used for its sweet protein and also the folklore it inspired about fruits that are so sweet that children forget their mothers’ milk in search of them. Gut- and diabetic-friendly, Oobil chocolate bars are available in three flavours: cacao, sea salt flakes and raspberry. Products are sold direct to consumers via the brand’s website and manufactured in California in a dairy-free, nut-free, kosher facility.

We have been tracking the concept of Re-engineering Indulgence, while also looking at Redefining Emotional Eating and innovations in the Healthy Snacking market and brands such as Oobli – with its fun, alternative new imagery – proves that healthy eating isn’t boring; for consumers it can be an adventure in and of itself finding products that innovate goodness.

Oobli, US

Strategic opportunity

Think of indulgence as more than the end feel of a product, but also the knowledge for the consumer that it has been manufactured with care and consideration – and that a consumer’s indulgence is not having a negative impact on themselves or the world around them

Stat: Deploying existing tech could slash the cost of sustainable development

The Energy Show at Het Nieuwe Instituut, The Netherlands
The Energy Show at Het Nieuwe Instituut, The Netherlands

Global – For businesses, the cost incurred by delivering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the UN has been rising since the pandemic started, but a new report published by the Force for Good initiative found that deploying existing technologies can effectively soften the blow.

For this study, Force for Good gathered data from 100 major tech companies, looking at the estimated costs of sustainable policies and the current solutions being employed. While the report priced the overall cost of delivering the SDGs at a whopping £145 trillion ($176 trillion, €164 trillion), it also concluded that this figure could be slashed by up to 40% by implementing and optimising the use of existing connectivity technologies.

Solutions such as Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, big data analytics and AI were cited as ways to achieve sustainable development at a lower cost. Applications like remote monitoring of production or efficient energy management in buildings are among the many available tech-enabled solutions that businesses can use.

As businesses navigate The Paralysis Paradox, these findings show how crucial the adoption of tech innovation is in the current landscape if businesses want to keep their environmental commitments and avoid creating a financial burden.

Strategic opportunity

As this assessment suggests, businesses leading the way in sustainable development are the ones doubling down on tech implementation – tech’s faster pace calls for more frequent audits and greater flexibility to enable quicker adoption

The Future Laboratory Events Calendar 2023

The Future Laboratory's Trend Briefing 2023 at the Royal Academy of Arts, UK The Future Laboratory's Trend Briefing 2023 at the Royal Academy of Arts, UK

Join us in 2023 for a series of inspiring video presentations, guest speaker panels and live Q&A sessions as well as our industry-renowned Trend Briefing in London.

Members of LS:N Global get free access to our full programme of online events in 2023. You can RSVP to these events via The Future Laboratory Community. Not yet a member? Get in contact with your account manager to set up your free account.

Join us online or in person this year and get inspired to make a better future happen with trends from Beta Boardrooms, Deep Work Dens and Polywork Campuses to embracing longevity as a core pillar in selling and synthesising tomorrow’s category innovations.

We hope to see you there.

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