Amid metaverse frenzy, Hon Hai unveils virtual EV showroom platform

Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. on Tuesday launched a 3D virtual platform to showcase its electric vehicle (EV) developments at a time of growing “metaverse” enthusiasm worldwide.


In a statement, Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn on the global market, said it had launched the online showroom platform through the GOXR app to build the beginning of the metaverse experience for the launches of three EV prototypes.


The so-called “metaverse” concept has been talked up by Meta (Facebook) CEO Mark Zuckerberg since July and refers to a digital world where people can communicate and work in a virtual environment.


iPhone assembler Hon Hai, which has entered the EV business in a bid to diversify its business, said the online platform is expected to allow the audience to “engage and interact with its newly announced EV products, Model E, Model C SUV, and the electric bus, Model T.”


The three EV prototypes were introduced for the first time at the Hon Hai Tech Day event on Oct. 18. These models were developed through a joint venture, Foxtron Vehicle Technologies Co., with Taiwan carmaker Yulon Group.


Foxtron is promoting a MIH Open Platform for EV development as Hon Hai aims to build the platform as the “Android of the electric car industry” as part of its efforts to enter the global electric vehicle market.


Through the virtual showcase platform, Hon Hai said, the audience will gain access to speeches made by the speakers at the Tech Day event such as the company’s chairman Liu Young-way (劉揚偉) so they can have a better understanding about the manufacturer’s most recent efforts in EV development.


The virtual showcase platform is expected to continue until the end of this year, Hon Hai said.


Liu has forecast that the EV business will generate NT$1 trillion (US$35.97 billion) in sales for Hon Hai in five years. Its sales momentum is expected to pick up from 2023, Liu added.


According to Liu, SUVs based on the Model C prototype will hit the market in 2023 at the earliest, and passenger cars based on the Model E, which was jointly developed with Italian car designer Pininfarina, will follow.


Hon Hai has scheduled an online investor conference for Nov. 12 to detail its third-quarter results and give guidance for the fourth quarter.


Market observers have anticipated that Hon Hai will address the challenges with a lack of raw materials for production as well as the orders it has secured to roll out the latest iPhone 13s.


Investors have also been anxiously waiting for news about Hon Hai’s plans in EV development, including its overseas investments.


In late October, Liu said Hon Hai could secure orders from the U.S. by the end of this year for the adoption of its EV prototypes, while the company is likely to sign an agreement to produce EV and e-scooters in Indonesia.


In addition, Hon Hai said it also planned to roll out EVs in Europe, India, and South America by the end of 2024.


Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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