Samsung is opening a VR movie studio in New York City to create new immersive experiences

By midian182 · 7 replies
Jan 25, 2016
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  1. It looks as if the virtual reality revolution is getting closer. Despite some eyebrows being raised at the Oculus Rift’s $600 price tag, it’s been reported that pre-sales for the headset are much higher than expected, and, most telling, every day brings news of another tech giant investing millions into the field. The latest company to increase its focus on VR is Samsung, which has just announced that it is opening a New York studio to produce new immersive experiences.

    The Korean firm revealed its plans at the Sundance film festival in Park City, Utah. It didn’t reveal much information about the new VR production studio, other than saying it would be located in an existing Samsung office already inhabited by a marketing team, according to Marc Mathieu, chief marketing officer of Samsung USA.

    In addition to the New York studio announcement, Samsung also revealed it has formed a year-long partnership with the Sundance Institute, the organization behind the film festival. The collaboration is designed to promote and develop new filmmaking talent and creative opportunities. In all likelihood, we can expect to see some more VR movie content to come from this partnership.

    "At Samsung we love stories," Mathieu said. "And we love to help people tell stories."

    Samsung set up a showcase at the festival for people to try out its Gear VR headset, which was built in collaboration with Oculus. Anyone with a compatible Galaxy smartphone, such as the Note 5 and S6 edge, can use the Gear VR, which is available for under $100. Until dedicated headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are released, Samsung’s device is said to produce the best consumer virtual reality experience available today.

    While most of the content for the upcoming VR headsets does seem to be aimed at gamers, an increasing number of companies are realizing virtual reality’s potential when it comes to TV and movies. Last year, Oculus revealed its in-house Oculus Story Studio division which is tasked with researching and creating virtual reality movies.

    Samsung isn't the only company to pour extra resources into the VR field over the last week. On Friday, Apple’s hiring of a top virtual reality expert suggested that it was also increasing its focus on VR/AR development.

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  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    If VR is to take off it has to become a helluva lot cheaper than 600 skins.
  3. Rippleman

    Rippleman TS Evangelist Posts: 811   +371

    Couple days ago I bought a Samsung s6 and Gear VR... pretty cool stuff BUT they need to 1) make everything more clear and blurry free (not sure if its possible with this tech) 2) use bigger batteries in the S6 3) included a BlueTooth basic controler (small cheap ones like found on ebay) 3) make the interface better.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,255   +454

    Not entirely sure I agree.... people spend more than that on a decent size TV. If one can get VR experience for a lot less than a nice big TV, then what is wrong with $600? I'm not questioning the value of the Oculus from a technical perspective (a box with a small screen and some lenses in it, big whoop) but from an experience point of view.
  5. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    If you're in the VR business (any business) you'd want people to use your product, I'm afraid $600 is far out of reach for a lot of people. Remember VR is still in it's infancy so it's going to be expensive now but it will start to come down in the near future, thank heavens for early adopters, they're the guinea pigs we all need. TV? That's a different story, it's been around forever. When one drops a load of dosh on a fancy TV they at least know what they're getting. An Oculus Rift? Uh uh. $600 is a big ask.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,255   +454

    I see your point.... but if VR catches on this time, and there is a good software base to run it on I feel $600 is very reasonable compared to a home theater setup.
  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Even if it does catch on, it'll still be a few years before it's commonplace. By that time that happens a lot of other companies will have jumped on the bandwagon and HMD's will be very much cheaper. I see no sense in taking the plunge now but hey, that's just me.
  8. JamesandBennie

    JamesandBennie TS Booster Posts: 170   +14

    I have to say I thought Gear VR was a gimmic and then I got it and it’s absolutely amazing . I’ll be getting any future versions of it for sure , I’m glad samsung putting effort behind it

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