Major television series and networks regularly utilize 360-degree and VR to promote franchises, but we haven’t quite reached a time where they’re comfortable with providing alternate viewing methods on a consistent basis. Companies have opened their arms to Netflix and Hulu to a point, but we may be on the verge of a new simultaneous broadcast format.
In its 24th season, ABC’s Dancing With The Stars is coming to a close this week with back-to-back episodes that serve as a two part finale and ABC is taking advantage of immersive media by airing a 360-degree feed alongside the live television broadcast.
Considering the popularity of the show, it can be argued that the immersive tech industry would have benefited a great deal even if ABC decided just to use the 360-degree broadcast with one of the regular episodes during the season. Coupling this exclusively with the season finale episodes, which we can assume will be their most watched for the season, is an even more potent boon. This plays into the idea of VR and 360-degree media being premium formats but also welcomes a large audience that’s likely filled with people not very aware of the content they can see in those formats.
The broadcast will be powered by Nokia’s OZO+ cameras, which are also being utilized by Disney for behind the scenes footage for major franchises, and can be viewed on both Facebook and YouTube. Part 1 of the finale airs today at 8 pm – 9 pm EST and part 2 airs tomorrow, March 23, and will be an extended episode lasting from 8:30 pm to 11 pm EST. The familiarity and widespread popularity of broadcasting like ABC’s Dancing With The Stars is another solid avenue for the VR industry to take into households and hopefully, there will be an uptick in interest after.