How Virtual Reality and Live Streaming Go Hand in Hand

Benedicte Guichard | Thu Mar 24 2016 | Industry insights

Once upon a time, we might have mentioned universally accessible virtual reality in jest as it seemed like something that might happen in a time lightyears away. Now it’s here - and it’s developing fast. Virtual reality allows you to tap into a whole new world, but unlike traditional video games and 3D cinematic experiences, you are fully immersed into it - essentially, the lines between reality and virtual reality have the potential to become very blurred.  Pretty amazing stuff to say the least.

How big is Virtual Reality then?

With virtual reality games on the rise and specialist headsets from the likes of Sony and Oculus now readily available to the public, virtual reality is sure to become a household staple within a matter of years. But how does this tie in with live streaming?

Well, before we get into that, consider this: the virtual reality market is expected to be worth $30 billion by 2020, according to Digi-Capital’s new Augmented/Virtual Reality Report 2015. One other source, Tractica, projects that the consumer virtual reality hardware and content revenue will reach $21.8 billion by 2020.

Projected VR devices and content

When something is that colossal, there’s a little avenue for everyone to take advantage of - and the live streaming market is no exception.

Also, if you really think about it, OTT and VR really do go hand in hand…

Not long ago, we touched on the subject of eSports and live streaming and just how many people tap into live gaming streams in order to spectate for the comfort of their own home; the same goes for virtual reality, except it has the potential to be wholly immersive.

Which industry verticals is VR taking over first?

For instance, college basketball is massive in The States, so Fox Sports have teamed up with virtual reality providers NextVR to offer those who can’t be at the game a way to feel like they’re a genuine part of the action without even physically being courtside, through ground level views, as well as all of the sights and sounds of the game to soak up - all that’s required is a headset and a subscription to Fox’s dedicated VR channel.

Aside from sports, virtual reality has works incredibly well within the music industry - and California’s Coachella Festival is a prime example of that. Using a sophisticated app, the festival is making it possible for music fans to feel like they’re really at the event (after all, not everyone can make it to the California desert in April), with 360 degree panoramic views of the festival site, virtual tours and a library of acts to watch from exciting crowd view perspectives.

The VR ecosystem

From these examples alone, it’s plain to see the amazing possibilities of a longstanding partnership between virtual reality and live streaming, as well as many other sectors of the technology and entertainment market.

For an even greater insight of the major players looking to get involved in the wonderful world of VR, check out this chart, made by The VR Fund:

VR ecosystem


Simply put, virtual reality is mind-blowing and with a little help from live streaming experts, it won’t be long before it becomes the norm for people to travel from London to Madison Square Garden and enjoy front row seats to their favorite rock band with the click of a button. Since this is s pretty hot topic, we we'll be back with some new blog posts soon. 

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