SVT360. Photo: ScreenshotSVT360. Photo: Screenshot

Swedish Television’s virtual reality app success shows future of television

Publicerad: 21 December 2015, kl. 12:23

The future of television is coming and it seems to be based around virtual reality.

Adam Jönsson

Last week, public service broadcaster Swedish Television (SVT) hosted its annual pledge drive Musikhjälpen where three hosts spend a week in a cage to raise money for various charitable causes.

This year, SVT took the viewers one step closer to the action by launching a new virtual reality app called SVT360.

The app became a hit and quickly rose to number one among the most downloaded Swedish apps right now.

‘‘We presented the idea of virtual reality to SVT and they were quick in wanting to find a project for it [the technology] and Musikhjälpen was a good fit’’ Simon Romanus, founder of WonderWorld VR, tells Smashdig. ‘‘We are the first company to have broadcast virtual reality live for this amount of time.’’

Virtual reality is increasingly becoming a more popular platform. (You can read more about it here and here.)

The news department of Swedish network TV4 recently released its first-ever 360 reportage where correspondent Stefan Borg told a story about the political landscape in Burma.

And Romanus thinks this is just the start of a VR boom.

‘‘Absolutely. We are currently in talks with all the major television networks in Sweden to do VR in news and documentaries but also in other areas,’’ Romanus says.

The platform connects a number of cameras that together create a spherical film. Users can experience the 360 videos on their computers and smartphones or via a pair of specialty goggles, which becomes a screen when connected to a smartphone.

‘‘There’s no denying that once you’ve tried virtual reality, you realize it’s too good to turn down,’’ says Romanus whose company is going global by opening a Los Angeles office in January. ‘‘I’ve presented the technology to over 200 people this fall and everyone is excited over the opportunities.’’

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