Happy Friday! Welcome to Issue 15 of Rerun, your weekly digest of digital storytelling, interactive media and the future of TV curated by Axonista.
Great news this week! The consumer version of the Oculus was finally unveiled, along with a swish new website. We also feature an interview with director Justin Lin [Fast & Furious, Star Trek 3] about his 360-degree film collaboration with Google. Also Apple TV hints, a future-telling TV Guide from 20 years ago, Huffington Post's new video network, Netflix making cable better, and much more! Let's get straight to it!
"Step into the Rift" - The consumer version of the Oculus is finally unveiled
You’re going to experience games as you’ve always dreamed of experiencing them
Yesterday Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe unveiled the first consumer version of the Rift alongside a surprise partnership with Microsoft. Although no pricing has yet been announced, we can expect the Rift to ship in Q1 next year with an Xbox One Controller. A new Oculus Touch controller will ship separately later in 2016. We're big fans of Oculus Rift at Rerun, and we're looking forward to playing with what promises to be a truly immersive VR experience and a lightweight headset. Watch the announcement rebroadcast in full on Twitch.
Future of TV
Fast & Furious director Justin Lin on making 360-degree movies with Google
Now I'm interested to see the reaction from the viewer. That's something that's so new and so unique that I don't know what other time in my life I'm ever going to have this experience again.
Justin Lin, director of the Fast & Furious movies—and the upcoming Star Trek 3—has turned his talent towards 360-degree film by making "Help" in a collaboration with Google for their Spotlight Stories.
In this interview with The Verge, he describes what a unique and special process it was just to make the short film, and what he thinks of the future of 360-degree video. You can also see a behind the scenes video to get an insight into the making of 'Help'.
Netflix no threat, but makes cable better, say Liberty Global, Vodafone
During the opening panel session of ANGACOM both Liberty Global and Vodafone Deutschland hinted that they do not see OTT video as a significant threat, but rather as something that has stimulated them to provide a better overall experience to their consumers.
The Rerun team thinks the cable giants still have plenty to learn from Netflix, and shouldn't discount the threat just yet.
Apple increases test device limits for developers, hinting at plans for Apple TV apps
We really wanted an Apple TV announcement at WWDC, but alas, that was not to be :( However, an increase to the number of Apple test devices for developers, which includes Apple TV, gives us renewed hope that finally, we'll be hearing about Apple TV at the next Apple event in September.
How a 1995 TV Guide predicted the future of TV, sort of
Look for the next big trend to find fans of shows like The X-Files (which already has an internet location) to join in virtual TV parties—large groups of people, each watching the same show in the solitude of his or her home, conversing with one another through cyberspace.
An amusing TV Guide story from 20 years ago actually predicted the future of TV pretty well! Interactive TV and internet 'parties' being two of the top predictions. Rabbit-ear antennas replacing cable though... not so much! (Although Aereo’s failed model of cloud-hosted antennas as a service almost had a shot at making this somewhat true. Ish...)
NowThis Media sees a big appetite for short news videos
Online video news company NowThis Media says it has seen dramatic growth, going from 1 million video views a year ago, to 50 million earlier this year, to 200 million in May.
NowThis, a startup that creates "platform-appropriate" video content for different social media channels, has experienced enormous growth over the past year. Why is this significant? They are an entirely distributed news company, proudly flying the phrase "Homepage. Even the word sounds old.". For example they create videos to be watchable even in mute autoplay on Facebook by cleverly overlaying text on the video, which no doubt adds to their view count.
As traditional outlets like the New York Times start distributing their content to Facebook and Apple's new News app, the success of NowThis is a strong indicator of the future of news and entertainment.
The Huffington Post opens a citizen journalism video network with BroadbandTV
What HuffPost did for blogging, it's now doing for video
Huffington Post and Broadband TV have joined forces to launch the YouTube news network, Outspeak. The idea is to change news as we know it, by providing a medium for everyone to become their own content creators.
The dawn of virtual reality
In the past, the video game industry has been one of the biggest drivers of VR technology, but not the only one. Looking towards the future, entertainment likely rivals gaming in terms of promise.
A timely article given the official unveiling of the Oculus yesterday, it gives an overview of the different areas that VR will impact. Not just gaming and entertainment, but live sports and travel too.
Netflix pushes 'OITNB' release six hours early during primetime
Netflix pulls a stunt to further disrupt the traditional TV schedule! Challenging the major networks, Orange is the New Black on Netflix has been released at primetime, 6 hours earlier than its planned time at #OrangeCon.