Metaverse + car = new outlet? BYD, SAIC, “Weixiaoli”… Car companies are vying to deploy the Metaverse

What kind of sparks will “car + Metaverse” collide? The industry will continue to pay attention.

Since 2022, the popularity of Metaverse-related concepts has remained high, and the automotive industry has not been absent from this new outlet.

The reporter of “Daily Economic News” found that by checking the data of Qixinbao, Great Wall Motor Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Great Wall Motor) also submitted a trademark application for “Great Wall Metaverse”.

Metaverse + car = new outlet? BYD, SAIC, "Weixiaoli"... Car companies are vying to deploy the Metaverse

Image source: Qixinbao

According to the reporter’s incomplete statistics, before this, many car companies such as BYD, SAIC, FAW, Nezha, Lili, NIO, Xiaopeng, Geely and so on have all applied for Metaverse-related trademarks.

“(BYD registered Metaverse related trademarks), mainly for the consideration of trademark protection, there is no plan to carry out related business.” The relevant person in charge of BYD told reporters.

An executive of a new energy vehicle brand told reporters: “As a large smart terminal, a car is born with the foundation of immersive experience. We strongly believe that the car will become one of the very important carriers of the Metaverse.”

Multi-brand squatting on Metaverse related trademarks

Since the second half of 2021, the concept of the Metaverse has continued to be popular, from the pursuit of capital, to the entry of technology giants, to the skyrocketing of the stocks of the Metaverse in the A-share market, games, social networking, short videos… Metaverse concept products emerge in an endless stream. For a time, “everything can be Metaverse”.

It is reported that the so-called “Metaverse” is to create an immersive virtual space in which users can conduct interactive experiences such as cultural, social, and entertainment activities. According to the forecast of IDC, a well-known market research organization, between 2020 and 2024, the average annual growth rate of the global virtual reality industry scale will reach 54%. With the continuous development of new technologies, industries related to the virtual reality Metaverse may usher in an explosion.

In this context, many car companies have also begun to carry out Metaverse-related layouts, and have registered trademarks one after another . In January this year, Hezhong New Energy Automobile Co., Ltd., an affiliated company of Nezha Automobile, added new trademark application information such as “Nezha Metaverse”, “Hezhong Metaverse” and “Natie Universe”. The international classification involves advertising sales, scientific instruments, transportation tools, etc.; at the end of last year, BYD registered a trademark called “BYD Metaverse”, and the international classification of the trademark is transportation tools; in December last year, FAW Group also applied for the registration of multiple “Metaverse” “METAVERSE” “HQMETAVERSE” “FMETAVERSE” ” trademark, the international classification involves means of transportation, advertising sales, etc. In November last year, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co., Ltd. applied for the registration of the trademark “Geometry Metaverse”, and the international classification was means of transportation.

Metaverse + car = new outlet? BYD, SAIC, "Weixiaoli"... Car companies are vying to deploy the Metaverse

Image source: Qixinbao

What’s more, in October 2021, SAIC Group applied for hundreds of Metaverse-related trademark categories in one go, with names including “Che Metaverse”, “Che Metaverse Z-UNIVERSE”, etc. The scope of use covers automobile research and development, Production, manufacturing and sales and other fields.

The ideal car in “Weixiaoli” took action in September 2021 and applied for related trademarks such as “Ideal Metaverse”, which are mainly used for electric vehicles, self-driving cars, sports cars, RVs and bus transportation. , advertising, packaging design, transportation, clothing and toy cars and other fields.

In addition, Xpeng Motors, Weilai Automobile and other companies have also registered Metaverse-related trademarks.However, many companies also told reporters that the registration of Metaverse related trademarks is mainly for the purpose of trademark protection, and related businesses will not be carried out for the time being .

Some car companies have begun to “test the water”

While car companies scramble to register Metaverse-related trademarks, some car companies have made more attempts, either launching the Metaverse virtual world, or incorporating the Metaverse concept into user operations.

On the eve of the Munich Motor Show last September, the BMW Group launched the Metaverse virtual world JOYTOPIA.Users can enter the world of JOYTOPIA without a username and password, enjoy the concerts of well-known British rock bands, and actively participate in activities through avatars.

“With JOYTOPIA, we have created our own Metaverse, which shows that we are responding to our customers’ needs for a personalised experience in the digital space,” said Stefan Ponikva, Vice President, Brand Communications and Brand Experience, BMW Group.

Hyundai Motor released its vision of robotics at CES 2022 in January this year, including “Metamobility” that innovates and expands users’ mobility experience, “Mobility of Things (MoT)” ecosystem that gives things mobility, and human-oriented robotics. “Intelligent Robots” etc. Among them, Metamobility means that smart devices are connected to the Metaverse platform, and the scope of human mobility will be extended to the virtual world, allowing users to achieve a new dimension of mobility experience.

Hyundai Motors believes that in the process, the application of innovative technologies such as artificial intelligence and autonomous driving will break the boundaries of future mobility, and various mobility modes such as automobiles and UAM (Urban Air Mobility) will become the gateway to the Metaverse. platform for smart devices.

Focusing on domestic car companies, in August last year, Zhiji Auto’s CSOP “User Data Rights Plan” was named “Original Stone Valley” and officially launched on the “IM Zhiji” App. According to the official introduction, users can explore wild stones, exchange experiences, upgrade equipment, and evolve vehicles here. The core of “Rough Stone Valley” lies in the 300 million rough stones linked to 4.9% of Zhiji Auto’s shares. Users can obtain 70% of them through “li program mining”, and “rough stones” can be used to exchange various hardware or OTA services.

Metaverse + car = new outlet? BYD, SAIC, "Weixiaoli"... Car companies are vying to deploy the Metaverse

Image source: Zhiji Automobile Official Wechat

Not only that, “Original Stone Valley” is positioned as a value community in the future, and its further goal is to create its own “Metaverse”. In the future “Original Stone Valley” secret realm of Zhiji Auto, each car owner will have a mapped virtual car. The virtual car and the real car are related to each other. Some driving behaviors and special data of the real car will affect the characteristics of the virtual car, so as to gradually develop a unique virtual car; on the contrary, the ability of the virtual car to develop, such as better hardware or Software services can be used as an upgrade direction for real cars.Tomoji calls it “twin entanglement”.

“The Metaverse is undoubtedly a very important track in the future. In the era of artificial intelligence, everyone is a creator, a sharer, and a user. The perception system of the car in the future will become stronger and stronger, and the computing power will also increase. The stronger it is, the stronger its ability to entangle the real and the virtual will be. In the future, the real and virtual worlds must be blended. Through CSOP, users can embrace the dividends of the times with us.” Liu Tao, Co-CEO of Zhiji Auto accepted reporters said in an interview.

In addition, Changan Ford, Changan Auchan, etc. have also made Metaverse signs in product or brand promotion.

Will it become a new retail marketing tool for automobiles?

In fact, it is generally believed in the industry that the enthusiasm of car companies for the concept of the Metaverse is mainly based on the layout of the future and the broad market space.

Gartner, a third-party research organization, released a new forecast that by 2026, 25% of people will work, shop, study, socialize or play in the Metaverse for at least an hour a day. “By moving from digital to Metaverse businesses, businesses will be able to expand and strengthen their business models in unprecedented ways. By 2026, 30% of global organizations will have products and services for the Metaverse.” Gartner Research Associate President Marty Resnick said.

Ma Tianyi, a researcher at Minsheng Securities, believes that Metaverse can deeply empower Industry 4.0, provide digital support for automobile manufacturing, and also bring new incremental demands in the display field. With the vigorous development of new energy vehicles, automobile manufacturing is gradually moving towards platformization, modularization and intelligence. The main links of automobile production and manufacturing are expected to be empowered through the Metaverse, simplifying the process and controlling the main links to improve efficiency.

At the same time, in Ma Tianyi’s view, with the advancement of Metaverse in the automotive industry, the penetration of smart cockpits will accelerate in the future, the total size of the screens on the vehicle will increase, and the vehicle display products will gradually migrate from LCD to Mini-LED. Three factors Under the resonance, the cockpit field of C-end automotive products will open up important incremental space for screen display related products.

“The Metaverse is a social space and a network tool. After car companies deploy in the Metaverse field, they can acquire users and fans, and in the future they can turn these users and fans into potential customers. On the other hand, the Metaverse can also provide entertainment. , business, office and other functions. After the car realizes automatic driving in the future, these functions will also be closely connected with the car. Car companies can make layout in advance, and they can use the Metaverse concept as a product highlight to attract consumers to buy cars, thereby achieving an increase in sales. If the company deploys in advance, it can also be used as a product highlight to attract consumers to buy new cars and increase sales.” Zhang Xiang, an auto analyst and researcher at the Auto Industry Innovation Research Center of North China University of Technology, told reporters.

In Zhang Xiang’s view, Metaverse can provide an ecosystem for intelligent connected vehicles on the one hand, and can also be used as a marketing tool for new retail on the other hand . “An important profitable marketing point for new retail now is to acquire users and fans. After more fans, it is easier to carry out low-cost marketing. At present, many features of the Metaverse are similar to social platforms such as Weibo and WeChat. Therefore, After car companies deploy in this field, they must also enter the content to attract more users’ attention.” Zhang Xiang said.

As more and more car companies begin to exert their efforts in the field of Metaverse, what kind of sparks will “car + Metaverse” collide? The industry will continue to pay attention.

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