What you need to know about Virtual Reality

Spice caught up with Neil Levin from Hire Intelligence to talk about the rise of Virtual Reality.
Bjork Digital marks the global debut of several virtual-reality videos made to accompany her 2015 album, Vulnicura. She launched this in Sydney last Friday.
Bjork launched virtual-reality videos made to accompany her 2015 album, Vulnicura, at Carriageworks in Sydney on June 3, 2016.

Spice caught up with Neil Levin from Hire Intelligence to talk about the rise of Virtual Reality.

What demand are you hearing from your customers in terms of Virtual Reality (VR) gear?
In the last three months we have had a significant increase in VR enquiries, particularly as Vivid has approached. Not only for the VR headsets themselves but also for the IT hardware required to run the VR content. We’ve also been asked about access to VR software and generating relevant content for the hardware we supply and have been in talks with a number of VR content creators so we can offer a one stop shop solution. The demand culminated in our adding 60 Samsung S7 Galaxy Smartphones and 60 Samsung Gear VR Series 3 headsets to our fleet earlier this month, with more on the way. We also added more high-end PC’s and graphics cards, and placed forward orders for the HTC Vive and Facebook’s Oculus Rift so we can assess their suitability for the rental market.

Is there a preference between the Samsung, the Oculus, and the Vive?
From what I’ve read, all indications are that from a user experience the Vive and Oculus are pretty much on a par, and as they’re dedicated headsets, are both a step up from the Samsung Gear VR (who some are calling Oculus Lite). This feedback is, however, more based around the home user experience, and I think the demand for a VR experience at events and launches is only going to grow, so being able to offer this in quantity and within a budget is going to be important. In that sense, I think the Samsung option is the go for now.

What involvement did you have in Bjork’s VR exhibition at Carriageworks?
Carriageworks contacted us as they are hosting Bjork’s exhibition. They required a significant quantity of VR gear in a short time frame, and we were only too delighted to be able to help. Bjork premiered her virtual reality content at Carriageworks at the beginning of the month, and I’ve heard some amazing feedback from friends who attended. They are showcasing 360 degree videos from her most recent album and there is even one where you are inside of Bjork’s mouth as she sings one of her songs!

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