ANA Presents Moonshot Avatar Concept at Upcoming XPRIZE Visioneers Summit

Japan’s largest airline sponsors team designing an XPRIZE competition to revolutionize travel

LOS ANGELES--()--Founded upon the principles of innovation and personal connection, ANA, Japan’s largest airline, is participating in the inaugural XPRIZE Visioneers Summit at the end of September, at which nine hand-selected teams will each present a concept for an XPRIZE competition, aspiring to create disruptive impact across multiple domains. Led by esteemed scientist, Dr.2 Harry Kloor (PH.D., PH.D.), the ANA Visioneers Team is focused on innovating “limitless travel” with the “ANA Avatar XPRIZE” to allow people to be in multiple places at once using advanced avatar technology that combines robotics, haptics, augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR). The team will present to a panel of 270 leading CEOs, technology innovators, political leaders, entrepreneurs, and philanthropists, with the goal of being selected as the next XPRIZE competition to be launched.

“Since we first launched ANA with just two helicopters more than 60 years ago, our mission has always been to bridge gaps of distance, time, and culture to bring people together”

“Since we first launched ANA with just two helicopters more than 60 years ago, our mission has always been to bridge gaps of distance, time, and culture to bring people together,” said Shuich Fujimura, Executive Vice President, Int’l Affairs, Alliances and Purchasing, ANA, and Innovation Board Member, XPRIZE. “As aviation technology has advanced, ANA has always been committed to the continual innovation of our fleet. Now, the ANA Avatar XPRIZE allows us to take a giant leap forward and push travel beyond the limits of physical aircraft by instantly transporting a traveler’s consciousness to an avatar located anywhere in the world. If we are selected to win at the Visioneers Summit, we hope to drive greater attention for the development of new technologies to make the Avatar XPRIZE a reality, and truly connect our world.”

The ANA Avatar XPRIZE is endorsed by authorities in numerous fields, including science, education, philanthropy, and venture capital. Experts in robotics, haptics, motion capture, AR, VR, artificial intelligence (AI), and deep machine learning from top universities and some of the world’s biggest tech companies have expressed their support and excitement for the program. These supporters include esteemed futurist Ray Kurzweil; entrepreneur and inventor Dean Kamen; President and CEO of Sony Computer Science Laboratories Hiroaki Kitano; former director, Tactical Technology Office at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, David Neyland; head of studio for SoftBank Robotics Americas Omar Abdelwahed; and many more.

“We’ve brought together some of the greatest minds of our day to contribute to the design of an Avatar XPRIZE, and assess the impact a general avatar system would have on the world,” said Kloor, an American scientist, film producer, director, writer, educator, technologist, and entrepreneur, with experience in a wide range of exponential technologies from AR and AI to robotics and motion capture control systems. “The ANA Avatar XPRIZE will democratize mankind’s physical talents – healthcare, education, engineering, and more – by bringing those skills to people who need them instantly, easily, and affordably. A village with a single avatar will have access to every doctor, every teacher, every engineer, every mechanic – every one. By solving the challenge of individual transportation, we are able to solve so many of the world’s problems.”

For more information about the ANA Avatar XPRIZE, visit www.xprize.org/visioneers/teams/limitless-travel-avatar.

About XPRIZE

XPRIZE, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is the global leader in designing and implementing innovative competition models to solve the world’s grandest challenges. XPRIZE utilizes a unique combination of gamification, crowd-sourcing, incentive prize theory, and exponential technologies as a formula to make 10x (vs. 10%) impact in the grand challenge domains facing our world. XPRIZE’s philosophy is that—under the right circumstances— igniting rapid experimentation from a variety of diverse lenses is the most efficient and effective method to driving exponential impact and solutions to grand challenges. Active competitions include the $30M Google Lunar XPRIZE, the $20M NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE, the $15M Global Learning XPRIZE, the $10M Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE, the $7M Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE, the $7M Barbara Bush Foundation Adult Literacy XPRIZE, and the $5M IBM Watson AI XPRIZE. For more information, visit www.xprize.org.

About ANA

All Nippon Airways (ANA) is the largest airline in Japan by revenues and passenger numbers. Founded in 1952, ANA flies today on 83 international routes and 116 domestic routes. The ANA group has 35,000 employees and a fleet of 247 aircraft. In FY2015, it carried 50.8 million passengers and generated revenues of 1.79 trillion Japanese yen. ANA offers trans-Pacific connections between Asia through the gateway of Japan and 10 North American destinations namely: New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, Houston, Vancouver, and Honolulu. ANA has been a member of Star Alliance since 1999 and has joint-ventures with United Airlines on trans-Pacific and Asia routes and with Lufthansa, Swiss International Airlines and Austrian Airlines on Japan-Europe routes. Its Frequent Flyer Program, ANA Mileage Club, has more than 26 million members. ANA was voted Airline of the Year for 2013 by Air Transport World Magazine, and in 2016 was awarded five stars for the fourth consecutive year by the world's leading Airline and Airport review site, SKYTRAX. ANA is the launch customer and biggest operator of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

Contacts

ANA Communications
Nao Gunji, +1 310-892-3627
n.gunji@fly-ana.com
or
Hill+Knowlton Strategies
Alex Herron, +1 310-633-9471
alex.herron@hkstrategies.com