360 video and virtual reality won big at CES this year, which means that 2018 is set to be explosive for immersive video creators and consumers.
If you make or watch 360/VR content, you have a lot to be excited about — from the launch of Intel Studios, which boasts a 10,000 square feet stage for volumetric video capture, to the reveal of HTC’s higher-resolution Vive Pro.
Team Pixvana’s General Manager Rachel Lanham reports back from CES, helping to break down what the many 360/VR announcements mean for the future of 360 video and virtual reality.
Pixvana: Tell us about your week— what’d you learn about 360 video’s place in emerging tech?
Rachel: From a brand perspective, CES has experienced a lot of VR-hype during the past few years. This year, companies are ready to use 360 video and virtual reality successfully instead of just using them to check a box, so to speak. In 2018, we’ll start to hear more conversations about the metrics for measuring 360/VR success.
What new tech are you most excited about getting your hands on?
Several announcements feel like big steps towards democratizing immersive video creation. Oculus Go is a big breakthrough for the consumer market and Oculus’s partnership with Xiaomi is really exciting. The $199 price point hits the nail on the head, and I imagine that the hardware’s accessibility will accelerate adoption.
The Oculus Go, which Xiaomi will make and sell in China, has a 2560×1440 resolution screen, built-in spatial audio, and supports three degrees of head tracking freedom.
Big publishers were buzzing about 180 hardware and content at CES — Lenovo’s Mirage Camera and Yi’s Horizon camera are compelling. The idea is that these cameras are point-and-shoot, and much of the content will be shared and streamed online (both cameras can livestream straight to YouTube). What’s exciting is that there are many possibilities for creating and sharing high-end 180 content.
From left to right: Google’s virtual reality team partnered with Lenovo and Yi to create the Mirage Camera and Horizon Camera.
Did anything surprise you about how CES attendees discussed and engaged with VR?
For me, the exciting part of 360/VR at CES was that immersive media wasn’t isolated to the AR/VR zone. XR was sprinkled throughout: we saw everything from an immersive massage chair experience to a VR gym. I’m sure that we’ll see VR continue to be used in innovative ways as creation and delivery become increasingly accessible. We’ll continue our part as we work with individual creators, agencies, and enterprise clients to make creating and delivering flawless 360/VR straightforward, painless, and fun!
Rachel Lanham is an accomplished leader and business/brand builder with decades of experience delivering transformation and growth in both startup and Fortune 500 settings.
Starting in 1999, Rachel and her colleagues at aQuantive were digital advertising pioneers, driving the evolution from nascent technology to direct marketing engine to critical component of cross-channel growth strategies. As an executive at the agency, Rachel led marketing innovation and results in collaboration with marquee partners like Weight Watchers, Levi’s, and MillerCoors. In 2012 she started her own digital health company, Health123, which sold in 2016.
She dreams of a world where all brands leverage XR storytelling to engage their employees and fans.