Like virtually all sectors, the art and entertainment industry has been exposed to significant pressure in recent years. With lockdowns and pandemics changing the way people seek out entertainment and inspiration, companies have been left searching for new ways to engage their audience.
Extended reality, in the form of AR, VR, and MR, has shown significant potential for this landscape. We’ve already begun to see galleries and museums creating their own augmented reality and virtual reality experiences, designed to educate and enlighten people anywhere. At the same time, the entertainment sector is rapidly investing in the concept of the metaverse, bringing virtual concerts and new forms of entertainment to global audiences.
As the way we consume art and entertainment continues to shift, some vendors in the XR space are demonstrating phenomenal capabilities for transforming brands. Here are just some of the top XR vendors majoring in this space.
The current company to watch in the race to the metaverse, Meta has incredible potential for those in the art and entertainment landscape. The flexible Oculus environment has already become the platform for a range of virtual museum, gallery and concert experiences hosted around the globe. What’s more, Meta’s AR-enhanced advertising options allow companies to promote their unique experiences across social media channels like never before.
As Meta continues to work on the development of its own unique “metaverse” we’re likely to see a host of new XR-boosted experiences in the entertainment space. Meta’s Oculus team have already partnered with leading companies like Sony Music to give fans an immersive way to explore music videos and unique content. Meta’s new digital landscape is sure to pave the way for endless new virtual concerts and online experiences in the years to come.
Although Microsoft hasn’t shown much of an investment in the entertainment and arts sector as of yet, it has a lot of potential to offer with the HoloLens ecosystem. The HoloLens headset is currently one of the most impressive mixed reality solutions on the market, paving the way for a future in holographic concerts, and virtual teleportation.
Microsoft’s technology could easily be the basis behind a number of mixed-reality and unique event experiences in the entertainment world going forward. This is particularly true when we consider the company’s growing commitment to creating its own metaverse. Already, Microsoft hosts endless online events through the Teams platform, which can integrate with the Microsoft Mesh and HoloLens environment, so it’s safe to say there’s a lot of room for growth here.
Google might not earn as much attention in the XR space as some other leading technology vendors, but it has already captured the attention of countless artists and educators with its unique virtual reality tools. Software like Google’s VR tilt brush allows users to create unique virtual art pieces in a completely limitless canvas space. The tool is already being used to help teach students at prestigious locations like Yale University.
At the same time, Google offers access to convenient and easy-to-use AR development tools, for creators who want to build unique artistic experiences within the Android platform. Going forward, we’re likely to see the company investing even more in the XR space, as headsets become more affordable, and development strategies grow. Google’s innovations could even appeal to companies from all backgrounds looking to leverage the benefits the metaverse could have to offer.
As one of the better-known companies in the virtual reality space, HTC VIVE has already proven to be a valuable partner for countless companies transitioning into the XR space. The HTC Vive headset is a common choice for entertainment companies looking to bring unique gaming and competitive experiences to hybrid environments. Various carnivals and VR gaming rooms around the world are experimenting with the flexible and immersive interface VIVE has to offer.
The technology offered by HTC VIVE is also fantastic for boosting the collaboration efforts between various entertainment industry leaders who may need a new way to join forces in today’s globalised landscape. Through the virtual reality environments offered by VIVE, companies will be able to align specialists from countless different countries in the same unique space.
A market leader in both the MR and VR space, Varjo has been making some phenomenal moves in extended reality in recent years. The vendor has one of the most compelling collections of tools and headsets on the market, custom-made for different industries like training and simulation, design, and engineering. These wearables could easily be adapted for the entertainment and arts sector too.
Varjo partners with a range of content studios already, which could give the company an easy entry point into the entertainment landscape. What’s more, the brand recently introduced the Varjo Reality Cloud, a platform which helps to simplify the process of streaming content through the cloud to devices in various locations. This cloud environment could have an important part to play in the new era of virtual content streaming.
Like Google, Apple has provided developers all over the world with a convenient way to get started with augmented reality. The Apple AR development landscape is a straightforward and easy-to-use ecosystem where virtually any company or creator can design and publish their own AR experience. There have already been a number of gallery and museum-based tools created for the Apple ecosystem, along with numerous art and design AR apps.
Apple’s ongoing investment into the XR world also involves a strong focus on sleek, lightweight wearable headsets for augmented reality. Future Apple smart glasses could play an amazing role in bringing intelligent information to customers in real-time, when they’re interacting with entertainment environments, events, and art spaces.
At the core of phenomenal art experiences in the XR world, is the right development software. Unity is a clear market leader in this environment, offering straightforward and powerful tools for those who want to push the boundaries of what’s possible in virtual and augmented reality. With Unity software, entertainment leaders in the film and television space can create virtual worlds based on the landscapes their fans already know and love.
As we continue to accelerate towards metaverse-enhanced event and entertainment experiences, there’s a good chance a number of the most impressive concerts and conferences will be built with Unity software. The vendor-agnostic approach of the company even allows developers to create experiences which work on almost any device.