Disney held its 2022 Disney Accelerator Demo Day at the end of last week, where participating companies working on developing immersive experiences showcased their work so far. Fifteen of Disney’s senior executives attended the event, where they discussed new technologies with the founders of each company.
A business development program that aims to accelerate growth, Disney Accelerator has been assisting innovative companies since 2014 with a view to developing innovative new ideas and bringing them to market with Disney’s might behind them. Participating in this year’s program were companies focusing on AR, NFTs and artificial intelligence characters
“For nearly one hundred years, Disney has embraced cutting-edge technology to remain at the forefront of creative storytelling and deliver the most innovative entertainment experiences for audiences and guests around the world,” says Disney Accelerator General Manager Bonnie Rosen.
What Disney did next
The company’s with new products on display were:
Flickplay, a Web3 social app that enables users to discover digital collectibles tied to real-world locations that they can experience and share via AR. Flickplay is in conversations with Disney Consumer Products, Games and Publishing (CPGP) to create and deliver digital collectible activations within physical locations across the Unites States.
Inworld AI allows users to create interactive, AI-driven characters for immersive experiences. Inworld announced that it is in conversations with ILMxLAB, Lucasfilm’s immersive storytelling studio, to build developer tools for creating characters at scale in immersive worlds. Additionally, Inworld is exploring the development of an AI personality for Disney Star’s DisneyStarverse platform. At today’s Demo Day, Inworld demonstrated a ‘Droid Maker’ prototype that the company created in collaboration with ILMxLAB.
Lockerverse is a community platform that empowers creators and brands to tell culture-defining stories and deliver unique access and experiences. Lockerverse is working with ESPN to launch a free NFT of the Celebration Bowl Trophy, to be exclusively first offered at the Celebration Bowl on December 17 in Atlanta.
Obsess is an experiential e-commerce platform that enables brands to create immersive 3D virtual stores on their websites and on Web3 platforms. In early October, Obsess launched the Disney Music Emporium virtual experience, an immersive online store celebrating the wonder of Disney music. Obsess is also in conversations with Disneyland Resort and shopDisney to create a special retail experience.
Polygon the blockchain tech built for Web3, is working with Disney on developing a proof of concept for exclusive digital collectibles to recognize Disney employees during special occasions.
Red 6 is an AR company that has created a patented headset and interface that works outdoors in dynamic, high-performance environments. Walt Disney Imagineering and Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) are exploring opportunities to bring this technology into our story-driven environments for next generation experiences of the future.
And for the first time, the previous year’s Disney Accelerator companies attended Demo Day and showcased their technologies and recent collaborations with The Walt Disney Company for guests. Including:
Attentive is a comprehensive mobile messaging platform that allows retail and e-commerce brands to connect directly with consumers through personalized communication experiences. This summer, Attentive launched an opt-in experience to provide Disney guests a seamless opportunity to communicate with Disney Theatrical Productions via SMS and email through www.aladdinthemusical.com.
CAMP creates experiential retail stores and online media destinations for the whole family. CAMP launched two collaborations with Disney this year, “Disney’s Mickey and Friends x CAMP: An Extra Big Adventure”, now in Dallas, while New York City families are enjoying the magical “Disney Encanto x CAMP” at its flagship store this holiday season. These immersive and interactive collaborations travel to other CAMP locations every few months.
Miko creates adorable robots that are playful learning companions for children across 140+ countries and utilized by parents, educators and technologists. Earlier this year, Miko collaborated with Disney Publishing to launch animated storybooks featuring characters from the worlds of Disney and Pixar on its Miko 3 robot.
A lifetime at the cutting edge
Since adding animatronics to its parks in 1955, the Walt Disney Company has always been quick to embrace new tech. Late last year, the company filed patents for AR experiences in its parks that won’t require a headset or glasses. According to the patent, two images will be over-imposed on a transparent surface, allowing Disney Park guests to view AR elements with their own eyes. The company even released its first AR experience in September via its streaming service, Disney+. The AR short film, Remembering, is available only on iOS devices.