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Strategic Alliance Formed Between Hitachi and Disney Parks
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A new strategic alliance between Hitachi and Disney Parks was announced at NEXT 2019. Hitachi Vantara announced their new alliance with Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products – the goal being to help in the advancement of Disney’s theme park innovations.

Hitachi Vantara is now the Official Ride and Show Analytics Provider of the Walt Disney World® Resort in Florida and the Disneyland® Resort in California. Working together, the companies plan to look toward the future implementation of data-driven solutions designed to improve operational efficiency for both shows and attractions. Building on Disney’s immersive storytelling, the pairing is planned to favorably enhance the methodology for collaborative data management and deploying industrial internet-of-things technologies (IIoT). That technology will be employed to drive a smooth guest experience at the parks, and enhance Disney’s storytelling capabilities through a variety of state of the art solutions.

These solutions use DataOps, which is a methodology designed for collaborative data management, one organizations utilize in data and analytics for real-time insights to operations, and making a smoother relationship between developers and IT operations. The company believes that DataOps is the next big thing for the IT sector. It’s capable of utilizing and enhancing the full potential of a company’s employees and data – the success of which eliminates classic business “what if” scenes, empowering employees by providing the right data at the right time. 

So how does it work? Hitachi’s Lumada data management, analytics and IoT software collects and analyzes data, providing real-time insights into park operations. The result:  predictive capabilities and so-called “digital twins,” which are virtual software models that represent physical objects. Why create them? -- to help organizations understand and optimize performance.

If all of that sounds just a little too space age, perhaps the best way to sum up the collaborative team work comes from Hitachi Vantara chief executive officer Brian Householder, who says “Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort have delighted their guests with one-of-a-kind experiences for decades…we are thrilled to work with Disney to provide intelligent, data-driven solutions that allow Disney to continue its legacy of delivering immersive experiences with increased operational efficiency.”

Combining storytelling and technologies, Disney and Hitachi have already come up with solutions across multiple attractions at Walt Disney World Resort, including Toy Story Land attractions Slinky Dog Dash, Toy Story Mania, and Alien Swirling Saucers at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The intertwining of these story-based attractions and tech has resulted in some stellar experiences for resort guests. For example, the Alien Swirling Saucers takes as its inspiration the original Magic Tea Cups ride at Disneyland. In place of the tea cups, you have swirling saucers at Disney Hollywood Studios. The Slinky Dog Dash at Florida's Walt Disney World Resort is similar to Disneyland's Gadget’s Go Coaster, which launched along with Mickey's Toontown in 1993. That ride is the shortest attraction at Disneyland park, at 44 seconds per ride; however, its popularity led to a second debut at Tokyo Disneyland in 1996.

In short, by applying the Hitachi technology to Disney’s creative prowess, the possibility for ride differentiation and new experiences are both more expansive and more seamless. The goal of the team-up is to create the ultimate in smoothly operating adventures and fun for park guests, as well as opening new possibilities of experience.

According to Trevor Larsen, executive vice president of facilities and operations services, at Disney Parks, “From the very beginning, Disney Parks have been an example of how innovation and incredible stories and characters can come together to create something truly special. Working with Hitachi Vantara and its portfolio of data-driven technologies, we can continue to take our guests on unbelievable adventures delivering consistently outstanding experiences for every guest, every time,” said Larsen.

Hitachi Vantara is a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. The company focuses on using data to innovate and create responsive outcomes for businesses and society at large. Over 80% of all Fortune 100 companies use Hitachi Vantara to achieve their data solutions. Hitachi Ltd. has its headquarters in Tokyo, and deals with operational, informational and product-driven technology.

Disney Parks, Experiences and Products is the behemoth behind everything Walt Disney started 60 years ago and has now grown to include: Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, ESPN, 20th Century Fox, and National Geographic, six resort destinations with 12 theme parks and 52 resorts in the United States, Europe, and Asia; a cruise line with four ships and plans for three more to be completed in 2021, 2022, and 2023; a family beach resort in Hawai‘i; children’s publishing brands; games licensors and merchandise.
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