VR Content Coming To TIME Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Sports Illustrated, And Others

by Joe Durbin • May 5th, 2016

TIME Inc. – the massive media conglomerate – announced yesterday at a Digital Content NewFront event that it will be bringing virtual reality content to its many brands including People Magazine, LIFE Magazine, Time MagazineEntertainment Weekly, and Sports Illustrated.

The immersive content will be provided through  a partnership with NextVR – an accomplished provider of VR videos for live events and other large scale productions – and TIME Inc’s new LIFE VR imprint.

A view of the camera from one of Next VR's test NBA shoots earlier this year. According to CTO Dave Cole, Next VR has "had more camera time on a professional basketball court than any other sport.”

A view of the camera from one of Next VR’s test NBA shoots earlier this year. According to CTO Dave Cole, Next VR has “had more camera time on a professional basketball court than any other sport.”

In an official release from both companies, LIFE VR is described as a “new addition to the LIFE brand that will showcase the world through the lens of virtual reality.” The platform will funnel content into “TIME Inc.’s 100 global brands.”

The actual delineation between the two brands is a bit unclear at this time, but it does seem that NextVR will be producing some of the LIFE VR content and its app will be the portal through which these offerings are accessed.

The NEXT VR app can be downloaded for free today on the Samsung Gear VR. Additional viewing options on the more powerful VR headsets will be “coming soon.”

There is no official world yet on exactly what form these VR offerings will take. However, the newly partnered organizations state that they will be displaying, “3-5 events this year.”

One of NextVR's cameras, from a live stream test shoot for the NHL

One of NextVR’s cameras, from a live stream test shoot for the NHL

This news is the a latest in a deluge of announcements coming from NextVR.

Earlier this year the young company announced a multi-year partnership with FOX Sports. It also broadcast this years Big East NCAA college basketball tournament live in VR.

Most recently, NextVR announced earlier this week that it would be partnering with the popular ticketing site, LiveNation, to bring hundreds of live concerts in real time to users through VR.

The newly released Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets need to accumulate impressive content libraries in order to stand out to consumers. The same is true for immersive video applications such as NextVR and its rivals: Jaunt, Immersive Media, YouTube and Facebook.

The competition is heating  up but, with a steady stream of announcements like this, NextVR seems to be taking an early lead.

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