AT&T, Intel, Ericsson, Warner Brothers showing off 5G-powered mixed-reality at MWC Barcelona
Augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality–from here on out we’re going to use Qualcomm’s umbrella term, extended reality (XR), have long been hyped as a major 5G application given the high-capacity and latency-sensitive nature of the technology. And while Google Glass might’ve jumped the gun, there’s a lot of revenue streams associated with XR like immersive gaming and entertainment experiences as well as clear cut enterprise and industrial uses.
To that latency point, the compute power needed to process an XR experience can’t live in a centralized data center somewhere. The physics just don’t work. There’ll be image lag and it’ll make you dizzy. That means that compute power has to be pushed out to the edge of the network to reside closer to the end user. AT&T, Intel, Ericsson and Warner Brothers are teaming up to showcase what the combo of 5G, edge and XR is all about next week at Mobile World Congress Barcelona.
Warner Brothers, which following AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner is now part of the carrier’s Warner Media company, is contributing legendary DC Comics characters Batman and Scarecrow. A little crucially important background: Batman is the alter-ego of billionaire businessman Bruce Wayne; he prowls the streets of Gotham delivering a unique brand of tech-assisted vigilantism. Scarecrow, the supervillain alias of Arkham Asylum psychologist Jonathan Crane, is known for experimenting with fear, ultimately weaponizing it in gas form. He was played by Cillian Murphy in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy.
Editor’s note: For more information on Batman, Scarecrow or comic books or movies based on comic books, DM @seankinneyRCR.
The demo will use an Ericsson Radio Base Station equipped with Intel Xeon process as well as Intel’s 5G Mobile Trial Platform. It builds on a proof of concept developed with the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.
Highlighting the entertainment potential of 5G-powered XR experiences, Warner Bros. Entertainment EVP of Digital Product, Platform and Strategy Justin Herz said in a statement, “We look forward to continuing to explore the power of 5G to deliver high-quality location-based entertainment experiences to our fans. It is by working closely with partners who are leaders in 5G that we can develop compelling immersive user experiences that will break through to a mass audience and bring our most iconic characters…to life.”
For those of you attending MWC Barcelona, the demo will be set up in Ericsson’s booth (Hall 2, 2060) and Intel’s booth (Hall 3, 3E31). The line starts behind me.