At a festival like Glastonbury, a tent is usually just a makeshift place to flop for a few hours of shuteye between sets, but for this year's event, British telecomms company EE is pitching a high-tech tent to keep festival-goers connected. Acting as a 4G Wi-Fi hotspot, the kitted-out camper packs VR headsets, voice-activated mood-setting, livestreams of performances, a solar-powered boot warmer and a fridge that reminds you to restock it.
According to EE, the smart features were designed based on feedback from festival fans. A survey said that 47 percent of people thought the only thing missing was a fully-stocked fridge with unlimited drinks – hardly surprising. A comfy place to crash was the top pick by 44 percent of responders, and in third place, 29 percent wanted a fast internet connection.
The 4GEE Smart Tent will help grant some of those wishes. The 4G connection is the lifeblood of the whole setup, supplying internet to the smart devices inside as well as acting as a Wi-Fi hotspot to other nearby attendees. Then there's the fridge, which tweets at users when the drink supply is running dry – and as the host, hopefully EE will take that cue to refill it. A Google Home unit is in charge of setting the mood, changing the lighting and music via voice commands.
So nobody inside misses the action just outside, six mobile devices suspended from an overhead beam will be livestreaming performances from different stages around the festival. The tent is also fitted with Google Daydream VR headsets, playing 360-degree videos from around Glastonbury, which should make it feel like you're actually there! Oh wait…
A few other niceties will be running off solar power, like a kettle, an array of fans to keep the tent cool in the "hot" English summer, and a boot warmer to keep your tootsies toasty and dry.
With all these high-tech luxuries, the 4GEE Smart Tent will no doubt be in high demand, so EE is running a competition to decide who gets to sleep over. Glastonbury attendees can apply through Twitter for the chance to spend Friday night in the tent, including breakfast in bed the next morning, a backstage pass to one of the performances, and their own Google Pixel phone.