By Vincent Duval

Streaming, Vewd for Automotive, IVI

April 13, 2022

Video streaming via in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) systems has a bright future. A recent automotive forecast from Strategy Analytics found that the total unit shipments of displays globally will rise from 61 million in 2020 to 101.4 million in 2028, a CAGR of 5.8%. The majority of those units will be front-seat displays.

If you’re a car manufacturer, the opportunity to offer rich in-vehicle media experiences is an exciting prospect. Delivery of in-vehicle connected services is projected to be a significant revenue generator for car makers in the future. What’s more, the availability of streamed entertainment services will reportedly be a key factor in the decision making of car buyers.

The growth of rich in-car streaming experiences is enabled by multiple converging factors in the automotive space. Let’s look at three trends that are driving the current transformation in in-vehicle entertainment.

Front-seat display availability is growing

Traditionally, IVI displays were limited to the back seat, with built-in DVD players or displays being the norm, along with support for on-the-go devices such as portable DVD players, streaming devices, and USB drives. However, the growth of the electric vehicle (EV) market, and the inherently longer recharge/fueling time, as well as the emergence of front-seat passenger displays, has created a use case for front-seat video consumption.

Vehicles such as the Tesla Model 3, the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, and others now feature state-of-the-art front-seat displays. As a result, we are seeing a growing consumer expectation for front-seat displays in premium vehicle brands and models.

EV models are increasing worldwide

Another factor affecting the trajectory for in-vehicle video is the increase in the number of EV models worldwide, driven by regulatory mandate and consumer demand. EVs with conventional 350V systems can take from 30 minutes to an hour to charge. That is the perfect opportunity for drivers and passengers to fill the time watching a TV episode or part of a movie.

Vehicle connectivity is becoming standard

Vehicle connectivity is nearly ubiquitous in developed markets. Thanks to 4G and emerging 5G networks, there is an established pipe into vehicles for streaming media of all types. The widespread availability of flat-rate or affordable data subscriptions in many markets has also impacted in-car streaming. In some cases, we are seeing entertainment packages included with a vehicle data subscription.

Taking the next step: How to implement in-car streaming

Having an integrated, embedded approach to video content in the vehicle is important to providing a premium, intuitive and enjoyable video experience in the car. In an ideal world, you’d be able to recreate the in-home entertainment experience by simply porting over the apps from smart TVs, streaming boxes and smartphones and tablets to the car. The reality is media rights is a highly fragmented environment between hardware (e.g. televisions, mobile devices, etc.), geographical and IVI operating system constraints and regulations, and partnership restrictions. It’s challenging to offer a seamless, comprehensive suite of entertainment options to end consumers.

By partnering with a company experienced in media rights, licensing, usage and cross-border functionality you can immediately start offering customers a rich-media in-car experience. With more than 20 years of expertise in developing solutions that are easily configurable and managed in the cloud, Vewd is leading the charge for better in-car streaming experiences. Our cloud solutions are deployed in millions of vehicles around the world.

If you’re interested in implementing in-car streaming, check out our recent white paper “The In-Car Streaming Opportunity – Getting from Here to There” created in collaboration with Strategy Analytics. The white paper is packed with ideas on how to navigate the fragmented global media landscape and deliver rich media experiences.