Samsung has announced the launch of a new VR content service, playing host to a huge library of virtual reality experiences. SamsungVR.com and the Samsung VR application will not only have masses of content for consumers, but will enable developers, publishers and enthusiasts to live stream and host their content in one accessible location.
Announced at Unpacked 2017, SamsungVR.com will have over 8,000 videos and 2,000 premium experiences available at launch. The new platform will initially feature content from a range of providers; Copa 90, Rinse FM and Nowness are all due to launch local content for the platform in the coming months.
The platform will be available for mobile, web and, obviously, the Samsung Gear VR itself, although understandably there currently seem to be no plans to expand to other VR devices. Seemingly working like a sort of VR Netflix, you’ll be able to browse channels based on your interests, taking in everything from animation to wildlife.
“Samsung already leads the way in giving people access to VR through our best-selling Gear VR headset, and we want ensure that we are also offering our consumers the very best VR content experiences.” said Conor Pierce, vice president of IT & Mobile at Samsung Electronics UK and Ireland.
“Together with the new Samsung Gear VR and Controller which we announced at MWC earlier this year, our vast curated library of free high-quality content and our efforts to engage working the best content creators out there, we will make it easier than ever to for people to find and consume VR content.”
The mentioned work being done with content creators is perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of SamsungVR.com. Among the experiences available in the new library will be a range of premium made-for-VR series, including Invisible, a supernatural drama that follows a mysterious American family, which is directed by Doug Liman, the man behind The Bourne Identity.
Additionally, there is a clear social media aspect to this update. Partially enabled by the new Gear equipment being released, it will supposedly be near-seamless for users to capture and upload VR content straight from their Gear camera. And with the capability to live stream as well, it would appear the other inspiration for the platform is Twitch.
The combination of professionally curated content and user uploads/streams seems like a potentially strange one and how it fits together will be an important part of making the platform work. However, in concept alone a Netflix-style library for VR content, particularly if the premium originals are on par with Netflix’s efforts in that direction, seems like a no-brainer.
The Twitch-like aspect of the service seems somewhat less natural, but given the size and growth of the streaming platform, if the Gear can establish a solid presence, it seems something that creators will be able to take by the reigns and establish something unique with.