Sky launches virtual reality app
Telecommunication giant Sky has made their first foray into the world of virtual reality (VR) with the launch of a free app designed to let customers experience their newly released virtual reality content.
The app can be downloaded from both the App and Google Play stores and is compatible with most available VR headsets, including Google's budget cardboard headset, the Samsung Gear and Facebook's Oculus Rift.
The VR content currently featured on Sky's app consists of around 20 short clips or “experiences” that cover a wide range of different genres, from a mini documentary on British boxer Anthony Joshua to a behind-the-scenes look at Formula One and some special footage from the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Whilst Sky have explicitly stated that they've no plans to start including any virtual reality programming in their main service or charging for these clips, the app will continue to be updated every few weeks with new content aiming to reflect what the audience have expressed an interest in.
VR was briefly explored by Sky back in 2013 when a few Premier League matches were filmed with a VR camera. One day there could potentially be a full 90-minute football game broadcast in virtual reality, but the incredibly high bandwidth needed to do so and reports of motion sickness being experienced by those watching are just two of the bigger issues holding it back.
Owing to the incredibly high cost of the more advanced VR headsets like the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive, it may be that Google's cardboard viewer and this kind of free or low cost app will be most of the general public's first experience of VR.
Source: The Telegraph