At the 2016 Google I/O developer’s conference, VP of virtual reality, Clay Bavor, took the stage in order to shine a more revealing light on the recently revealed Daydream platform. After drawing the crowd’s attention to the GoPo Odyssey VR camera on the stage, Bavor ended his speech by announcing two new VR film partners for Daydream: A Chinese company known as Yi Technology, and IMAX.
Bavor announced that Yi Technology is working on a 4k VR “action cam” while Google and IMAX will be working together to create a VR camera for Hollywood.
IMAX is an already well established production brand that has gone further than perhaps any other company towards the goal of creating presence in the theater.
“IMAX is known around the world for its immersive visuals and audio,” Bavor said from the stage. “We’re really excited about what we’re going to be able to do with them.”
The IMAX partnership centers around Google’s “Jump” VR video creation platform. Jump does refer to an actual camera that Google has built to capture omni-directional, 360, 3D stereoscopic video. But it is also a larger term for the companies established production process for creating this type of content.
It is into this pipeline that IMAX will be stepping through its partnership with Google. Bavor did not confirm the exact details of the partnership, but by emphasizing the use of the Jump platform the implication is that Google will be combining its VR know-how with IMAX’s vast hardware knowledge.
The results could be a camera that has the potential to dramatically alter the established cinematic landscape.
Samsung has announced plans to establish its own VR-only movie studio, but so far the technology has yet to break into old Hollywood and your local multiplex. This Google/IMAX camera could be the first step towards big-budget, wide release VR films.