Published on May 14th, 2021 | by Joshua Chin0
Stream Videos Now From Within Your Polestar 2
Fortunately this beta video streaming app from Polestar only works when the vehicle is stationary.
With in-car infotainment screens getting bigger and bigger these days, it was only a matter of time that automakers begin utilising it as the smart TV that it is. And that is exactly what Polestar is currently doing, with its recent announcement regarding the development of its own video streaming app for its Polestar 2.
Touted to be ‘perfect for entertainment while parked or charging’, this newly introduced app by the EV automaker aims to bring a multitude of ‘web-based streaming content from various providers’ directly into the 11-inch central infotainment touchscreen within the Polestar 2. Though still in its beta developmental phase at the moment, it is currently already available for in-car download throughout Europe.
Speaking more about what is available to watch within the streaming app, the content currently on offer includes various news and national TV broadcasts. Feeds from SVT in Sweden, TV2 in Norway, and GOPlay and RTBF in Belgium for instance are available, as well as content from BBC Ideas, Al Jazeera English and Germany’s tagesschau.
A video playlist that is specifically curated by Polestar is also on offer. Thanks to its infotainment system running on Android Automotive OS too, it is possible for streaming services like Netflix, YouTube and Twitch to develop and release bespoke applications on the platform’s app store in the future.
Now as for how this streaming app works meanwhile, Polestar claims that the video will (sensibly) only appear on the portrait-oriented touchscreen when the car is in park and not in motion. Interestingly however, the audio from the stream will still continue to play in the background when the vehicle is on the move, thereby allowing occupants to continue the video-less broadcast while out on the road.
Watching videos in cars are not a new phenomenon of course, DVD players being fitted to cars dating back to the early noughties after all. This idea of Polestar to offer a streaming service to entertain occupants while parked up isn’t exactly novel either, especially considering that a multitude of new cars these days have in-car streaming service integration too, and the Honda e even has the nifty party piece of being able to be hooked up to a Nintendo Switch or a PlayStation.
Seeing however as the cars themselves are getting smarter and are able to drive themselves more and more, it is perhaps worth considering the possibility that we might soon see drivers actively watching videos while driving instead of focusing on the road. Distracted driving is already widespread these days, and there is no doubt that these features will inevitably make this dangerous problem worse.
PRESS RELEASE: Polestar has developed its own video streaming app for Polestar 2. The beta app, which is available now in all European markets, brings web-based streaming content from various providers directly to the 11-inch centre display in the car – perfect for entertainment while parked or charging.
“We have released the new Polestar video app in beta form so that our customers can start to enjoy the benefits of in-car video streaming sooner rather than later,” comments Thomas Ingenlath, Polestar CEO. “We will receive feedback – both good and bad – that will help to refine the app based on thousands of use cases, rather than a small, defined set. We will also continue to add channels in the future, which gives the app huge growth potential since it is realistically able to integrate any web-based streams.”
Content includes news services and national TV broadcasts where available, as well as a video playlist curated by Polestar. At launch, the app includes feeds from SVT in Sweden, TV2 in Norway, and GOPlay and RTBF in Belgium. All European market also receive feeds from BBC Ideas, Al Jazeera English and Germany’s tagesschau. Additional feeds specific to other markets will be added over time.
One of the advantages of the Android Automotive OS in Polestar 2 is the ease with which the developer community can innovate. With streamlined development and testing possible thanks to an online emulator – available in Polestar’s developer portal and open to any app developer – Polestar is able to release new apps efficiently. As customer needs and desires evolve, so can the services and solutions Polestar provides, and without the typical long lead times demanded by the traditional car industry.
The Polestar video app can be used when the car is not in motion. However, when streaming and switching out of Park, audio continues in the background, allowing occupants to continue to follow the broadcast. Data consumed by the app is included in the car’s data plan, meaning no extra costs for owners.