Sky launches VR app

Sky_VR_AppSky has launched a dedicated virtual reality app that will feature content produced by Sky and the UK pay TV operator’s partners.

The Sky VR App for Android and iOS smartphones will feature a range of 360-degree videos, including two new Sky VR experiences: Sky Sports: Closer featuring David Beckham; and Sky’s first VR commission, an English National Ballet production of Giselle.

In Sky Sports: Closer, former footballer David Beckham will lead viewers on a virtual tour of the world’s best sports events. Sky’s VR Studios division created the footage in-house, in collaboration with Google.

Factory 42, a new immersive content production company set up by former Sky 3D director, John Cassy will produce the two-minute English National Ballet production, which will be released later this autumn.

Other VR content that will appear in the app includes: Sky Cinema-produced VR footage from the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, called Star Wars: Red Carpet; two Disney VR experiences from film The Jungle Book; a Fox Innovation Lab spin-off from film The Martian, called The Martian Sneak Peek; and Suicide Squad: Squad 360 from Warner Brothers.

“Interest in VR content is building, generating more excitement every day.  We are just at the beginning of our VR journey at Sky, launching Sky VR studios earlier this year and we are already breaking new ground,” said Gary Davey, managing director, content at Sky.

Sky made its first steps into virtual reality back in 2013 when it invested in US-based cinematic VR firm, Jaunt. Since then Sky has been carrying out tests across a range of events including an interview in VR with David Beckham and two films shot during Formula 1 testing in Barcelona.

Sky launched Sky VR Studios in March and announced that it would release a virtual reality app in July when it announced its results for the 12 months ended June 30.

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