Following the deal it inked with NextVR in February to develop VR content from sports events it broadcasts, Fox Sports is now teaming up with live-streaming startup LiveLike to broadcast some of its upcoming collegiate football games in virtual reality. Viewers can download the Fox Sports VR app, which is available on iOS, Android, and Gear VR, and sign in with their cable provider credentials to watch games in several immersive settings. Besides standard 360-degree views from different viewpoints, the app also features a Virtual Suit mode that simulates a viewing experience from a VIP suite.
Why Brands Should Care
By combining the immersion that VR technology provides and the immediacy of live streaming, Fox Sports is creating a powerful viewing experience that more content creators and media owners should explore to fully engage their audience. With the quickening pace of VR content development and an increasing number of ad platforms testing new formats in VR and 360 video, brands need to start working with content creators today to produce branded 360-degree and/or live video content.
The Lab currently has four VR headsets — an Oculus Rift, an HTC Vive, and two Samsung Gear VRs — ready for demos. If you’re interested in getting a hands-on demo and figuring out how your brand can employ VR to excite and engage with consumers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland ([email protected]) to schedule a visit to the Lab.
Oculus rolled out social features and games to the Samsung Gear VR on Thursday, marking a great advance in VR development. Users can now create a profile and then easily search for friends by their Oculus username. Support for new multiplayer VR games such as Social Trivia and Herobound are being added to the platform as well, allowing users to play alongside each other in virtual reality. Moreover, Oculus will also be adding 360 video content from Facebook to its video section next week, allowing users to pull in the spherical videos from their News Feed to watch in Gear VR.
What Brands Need To Do
As virtual reality technologies continue to grow in capabilities, brands are also starting to experiment with some more sophisticated forms of VR content. One recent example in this regard is insurance firm Liberty Mutual, who launched its first VR campaign this week on Facebook. Created with Havas and Facebook’s Creative Shop, the brand’s VR spot is designed to promote Liberty Mutual’s 24/7 roadside assistance service through a choose-your-own-adventure style interactive experience. As Facebook makes a strong push for VR and 360-degree videos, brands would be smart to seize the opportunity and work closely with content creators to craft interactive VR experiences to intrigue and engage consumers.
Source: VentureBeat & AdWeek
Header image courtesy of Oculus Blog
Guests at Marriott Hotels can now order a “VRoom Service,” which offers visitors virtual tours of Chile, China, and Rwanda, powered by Samsung Gear VR headset. The hotel created these distinct global travel experiences in partnership with Framestore VR Studio, marking it latest foray into developing original VR content to bring immersive experiences for its customers. Previously, Marriott also offered visitors virtual tours of London and Hawaii with the help of the Oculus Rift headset.
What Brands Should Do
Similar to Birchbox’s experiment with virtual reality earlier this year, Marriott joins a handful of early-adopting brands that are producing original VR content for the VR platform to bring added value to the customers. For brands that seek to immersively engage with the audience, now would be the time to start experimenting with VR content creation.
Header image taken from Marriott’s YouTube Video “VR Postcards“
Samsung has teamed up with Skybound Entertainment, the studio behind hit TV series The Walking Dead, to produce a new virtual reality series titled “Gone,” exclusively for Samsung Gear VR headsets. Virtual reality, along with other immersive media platforms such as augmented reality and spherical videos, has enjoyed a lot of buzz in recent years but suffers from a chicken-and-egg problem with content and users buying the hardware. By teaming up with a Hollywood studio, Samsung is clearly hoping to follow the footsteps of Facebook’s Oculus VR and leverage the Hollywood’s production expertise into creating appealing content in order to attract users which will in turn attract more content creators.
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Several alcohol brands such as Jim Beam, Dos Equis, and Fire Eater are all trying out virtual reality gears to win over millennial bar-goers at the crucial moments of drink purchasing. By offering at-the-bar VR gaming experiences powered by the likes of Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear, these brands look to capture the attention of patrons in a noisy, distracting environment and turn that engagement into brand awareness, or better yet, sales on the spot.