Entertainment Innovation Map Reveals Emerging Technologies & Startups

At StartUs Insights, we place great value in identifying emerging technologies and promising startups early on. For this research on the future of entertainment, our Innovation Analysts have examined more than 800 startups and their technologies:

The entertainment industry has generally been the most immediate route of introducing new technologies to consumers. Especially in the area of home entertainment, content consumption has been transformed from relying on stationary media, such as home theatre and gaming console/PC to becoming mobile.

The next wave of innovation is aimed at connecting home entertainment devices (Connected Home and Streaming) to provide a more immersive (3D/4D, VR/AR, and Drones) experience.

With the estimated entertainment and media revenue reaching $2.4 trillion by 2022, our Innovation Analysts at StartUs Insights researched more than 800 cutting-edge startups and identified the following innovation areas that significantly support companies to be at the forefront of technological change in the entertainment industry.

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Entertainment Innovation Map (c) StartUs Insights



Virtual Reality (VR) & Augmented Reality (AR)

With increasing calculation power, smaller size, faster mobile connection, and less power consumption, mobile VR/AR devices will bring VR/AR experience to the next level. Complemented by additional data from GPS, environmental sensing, and advanced gesture/voice control, VR/AR experience will soon be more immersive than ever.

Connected Home

The Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G network allow every entertainment technology to work in junction to deliver the best user experience. Content creators can fully utilize all connected devices, such as lighting, room temperature, and other 4D equipment to create next-level experiences.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Some creators in the entertainment industry have started to implement Artificial Intelligence to create content such as music, movie plot points and trailers based on market data analytics and box office numbers. Through deep learning algorism, AI increasingly supports creators to be more efficient in creating content tailored to market demands.

Curated Content

Overwhelmed by the extensive amount of information available, it has become increasingly difficult for consumers to find content that matches their individual interest. Content providers rely both on AI, influencers and consumers’ own initiative to generate and share personalized Curated Content.


In addition to widely available 3D screen technology and AR/VR headsets, sensory factors such as smell and rain grant viewers to become part of the world that is appearing all around them. Connected entertainment devices can work in juncture to provide a next-level experience to consumers while cloud-based platforms capture, measure, and analyze data for future improvement of content.



Gesture Control

Gesture Control blends voice, gesture and movement tracking together to provide a more intuitive control interface to traditional devices and in AR/VR environment. This natural user interface (NUI) allows for the interaction and control of a computer system without physical contact and is crucial in adding an immersive experience to VR/AR content.


Today’s consumer drones equipped with advanced camera systems can already produce close-range aerial filming and photography. Moreover, professional drones have become an indispensable part of video production across the industry. Drone flight live-stream and virtual piloting in augmented or virtual reality will bring the next level of drone entertainment.


Live streaming events, shows, and gameplay have already become a popular form of entertainment among Millenials. With the implementation of 5G network and specialized cloud platforms, streaming will not be limited to passive media consumption, but also allow users to play PC/console games via stream on any device at any place.

Subscription On-Demand

Subscription On-Demand transforms entertainment business models into Content-as-a-Service (CaaS) models that allow companies to deliver better services and high-quality content or experiences to consumers while generating consistent revenue. After having transformed the music and TV/movie industries, Subscription On-Demand is moving to real-world entertainment experiences such as movie theatres, cultural events, and concerts.

Disruptive Startups In The Entertainment Industry Include:

  • Implemented in gaming, augmented reality opens many doors. One of those is opened by Ukrainian startup WeAR Studios. The company creates full cycle AR development with the purpose to assist computer game lovers to go beyond their imaginations and turn any space into a game portal – bringing games into a physical space.
  • nCube, a London based Smart Home startup, has built a smart home hub based on Z-Wave technology. The smart home hub is compatible with numerous smart device producers and can control every aspect of their smart home via nCube App.
  • Belgian ScriptBook uses artificial intelligence to quantify story-parameters into a predictive model that enables stakeholders in the film business to avoid box office flops. The startup’s solution Script2Screen analyzes screenplays and delivers an objective assessment of a script’s commercial and critical success.
  • Curata employs machine learning, natural language processing (NLP), and artificial intelligence to power two software platforms, Curata Content Curation Software (Curata CCS) and Curata Content Marketing Platform (Curata CMP). The startup’s software allows companies to discover content via their self-learning engine, organize and contextualize as well as publish and promote it across blogs, social channels, and newsletters.
  • VisiSonics leverages scientific discovery to add a third dimension to the sound consumers hear electronically, bringing 3D sound to gaming, virtual reality, and entertainment (movies and music) platforms. In addition, through its RealSpace™ Audio Panoramic Camera the startup can capture, measure, analyze, and reproduce natural, fully dimensional sound in any environment.
  • London-based FlickTek delivers solutions to enhance user experience through seamless technology interaction. With a background in biomedicine and engineering, the startup creates technology capable of detecting and interpreting human bio-physiological signals to control electronic devices such as smartphones or computers.
  • German Skynamic believes that “Close Range Aerial Filming” will play a key role in how to use camera drones in the future. Their team of skilled pilots is experienced in flying cinema lenses such as Standard Primes, Ultra Primes, Highspeed Primes, or Anamorphic Kowa. While also providing VR 360° rigs, the startup offers live streaming via SDI directly to the broadcasting van to capture unique images that tell a story.
  • DaCast develops a live stream hosting platform designed with a Streaming-as-a-Service approach providing a flexible, pay-as-you-go solution to content owners and broadcasters. The startup claims to generate revenue in just 20 minutes – giving entertainment companies a new way to compete in this market.
  • Vodworks provides over the top (OTT) solutions to the media industry. Having created so-called VidScape technology, the startup offers a customizable video and data management platform, multiscreen apps as well as content discovery and recommendation for online TV and global video distribution.

The innovation areas named in the Entertainment Innovation Map not only improve the availability and adaptability of entertainment content but also make the user experience more connected, mobile and immersive.

This shows that in order to survive, it is not enough for entertainment companies to create more interactive and complex content; they must also change their business models accordingly. As it is vital for companies to act now to swiftly adopt new technologies, at StartUs Insights, we support you in getting an early start by facilitating the collaboration with pioneering startups as well as providing actionable Innovation Intelligence.

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