2016 is over. That in and of itself is a relief, and hot on the heels of the new year was the Consumer Electronic’s Show in Las Vegas. At CES, entrepreneurs, innovators and brilliant minds from around the world invade the Nevada desert, bringing their best and brightest inventions along for the ride. It’s a time where we celebrate new ideas, and no industry is more receptive to fresh thinking than virtual and augmented reality.
2016 was a big year for the world of immersive tech, but for things to really take off 2017 needs to be even bigger. To celebrate a year of advancement, and to usher in a brand new era of progress, Upload and Audi partnered together to throw a VR party in the sky.
The extravaganza was held on the top two floors of the Palms Resort and Casino and each floor had its own unique energy. The View featured a custom designed stylish lounge (pictured below). Guests were able to enjoy a cocktail while listening to eclectic & relaxing DJs – including live-violinist Lapa and Emancipator. Both floors had killer musical performers and virtual reality demos from some of the industry’s hottest creators.
These demos included an HTC Vive machine gun, the Audi Car Configurator, the Audi Le Mans Mixed Reality Experience and a winner from MSI’s recent VR Jam Contest. The top floor also had…well just take a look for yourself:
Yes, that is a human woman that has somehow come to the decision that gravity no longer applies to her. Through a combination of gymnastic excellence, and perhaps witchcraft, this professional aerialist was able to perform high above the crowds, all while wearing an HTC Vive VR headset.
The night also included heartfelt remarks from Upload’s co-founders, Will Mason and Taylor Freeman, and Audi’s Marcus Kuhne.
Last year during CES, Freeman and Mason announced the launch of the Upload Collective — a San Francisco coworking office that now houses over 40 VR/AR companies. At this year’s event the pair had another bit of significant news to share.
“We are thrilled to announce our second coworking location is opening in Los Angeles this spring! The 20,000 square-foot space in Marina Del Rey will serve as an immersive reality hub in the heart of the entertainment industry’s backyard. Partnering with a variety of entertainment, tech and media companies, Upload LA is on track to serve the community in a big way – offering resources and education in this technology like never before.” Freeman said.
Marcus Kuhne spoke about Audi’s commitment to equip dealerships with complex and ambitious VR applications, including the Audi Car Configurator. Audi is acting as an accelerator for the establishment of industrial VR.
Altogether it was a night to remember and one that represented the commitment of companies, both old and new, to the exciting world of virtual reality. Upload would like to thank our presenting sponsor, Audi and Partner Sponsors, Technicolor and NextVR for all of their support on this project.
We can’t wait to see what new things we have to celebrate next year!
See you there.