Netflix Plans to Open Two Entertainment Complexes in 2025

Netflix has selected Dallas, Texas and Pennsylvania’s King of Prussia as the first two cities for its massive location-based entertainment venues, set to open in 2025. Specifying “they’re not exactly theme parks,” the Netflix House destinations will feature shopping, eateries and “regularly updated” experiential activities that tie-in with major franchises like “Bridgerton,” “Stranger Things” and “Squid Game.” Netflix CMO Marian Lee says the company has already launched more than 50 experiences in 25 cities, with Netflix House representing “the next generation” venue for the streaming giant. Continue reading Netflix Plans to Open Two Entertainment Complexes in 2025

The Growth of Location-Based Immersive Team Video Games

UK-based Immersive Gamebox has been bringing interactive play to venues, first in London and now in the U.S., where the company is currently in about 20 markets including New York, San Jose, Dallas, Denver and Salt Lake City. The goal is to expand to 100 stateside locations by 2025. Teams engage in social play in interactive smart rooms, taking part in adventures based on IP that so far includes about a dozen titles, including “Squid Game” and “Angry Birds.” Players are outfitted with 3D motion-tracking visors and touchscreens, eliminating the need for headsets. Continue reading The Growth of Location-Based Immersive Team Video Games

ETC@USC Student Challenge: Future of Themed Experiences

On October 22, ETC@USC began a one-week student challenge on “The Future of Themed Experiences.” Leveraging the tools, techniques and resources of today and those that could emerge in the next few years, students were asked to come up with an original idea for an experience that: 1) has a specific location-based experience, and 2) extends the experience out into the real and virtual worlds before and after the person has the location-based experience. Eighteen 3-minute pitch videos were submitted and an esteemed panel of industry executives chose to reward five of them. All 18 videos with follow-up Q&A discussions are available online. Continue reading ETC@USC Student Challenge: Future of Themed Experiences

CES: Top Concepts from the 2022 Eureka Park Startup Zone

ETC’s George Gerba and Don Levy spent Wednesday perusing the CES 2022 Eureka Park startup zone looking for new companies and unique products that would be of particular interest to the entertainment industry. Among this year’s most compelling concepts were an AI-assisted content creation tool, COVID-compliant tech ideal for workspaces and productions, AI-based audio tech, a response tracking system for dynamic displays, emerging NFT approaches for artists, new tech investing models, light-based networking solutions, paper-based biofuel cells and haptic wearables. Continue reading CES: Top Concepts from the 2022 Eureka Park Startup Zone

Light Field Lab Touts ‘Highest Resolution Holographic Display’

Light Field Lab is developing a “naked-eye” holographic technology called SolidLight, which essentially creates high-resolution 3D objects in the real world using light (think the “Star Trek” holodeck or Princess Leia uttering “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi” — but better than the actual hologram tech we’ve seen in recent years). “We’re creating a world where content escapes the screen and merges with reality,” claims the Light Field website. SolidLight builds freestanding 3D objects using what the company describes as a “broad-spectrum, complex-amplitude, dense converging wavefront.” Continue reading Light Field Lab Touts ‘Highest Resolution Holographic Display’

Cinematic and Narrative Virtual Reality Tech Moving Forward

At the Cannes Film Festival’s XR program, VeeR co-founder Jingshu Chen delivered a keynote on monetization of virtual reality, in which she referred to Gartner’s well-known Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies. She pointed out that Facebook’s 2014 acquisition of Oculus sparked the “peak of inflated expectations,” followed by a downhill path to the “trough of disillusionment” beginning in 2017, when headset sales slumped and some VR companies pulled back. Now, she said, we could be on the upward “slope of enlightenment.” Continue reading Cinematic and Narrative Virtual Reality Tech Moving Forward

ETC@USC Announces Winners of Immersive Media Challenge

ETC’s Immersive Media Challenge judges selected four submissions that best meet the criteria of “a great idea, well told.” Jack Vomacka’s Audio-Visual Animation describes a blend of physical objects and projection technologies that would create more believable LBE experiences. Sam Clempson’s Mind Palace is an AR-based memory-improvement tool. Courtney Zhang’s Affa Streaming AI Experience uses mood detection to make content recommendations. And Lance Newby’s MIC (ML for In-game Content) turns non-playable characters into minor characters who participate in and can influence the action of a video game. Pitch videos and answers to challenge questions for all submissions are posted on ETC’s homepage. Continue reading ETC@USC Announces Winners of Immersive Media Challenge

DreamlandXR Festival Brings the XR Community Together

If you were looking for a break from CES this week, DreamlandXR offered a wide range of social and professional events with a focus on immersive entertainment, music and eSports. The festival included an insightful two-day conference of immersive media panels and demos at the Alexis Park Resort. Industry leaders discussed the logistics, management, business models and marketing of XR experiences in location-based entertainment, casino spaces, VR theaters, and more. We were told that videos of all panels will be posted on the DreamlandXR site in the near future. Continue reading DreamlandXR Festival Brings the XR Community Together

CES: Fragrance Diffusion System Has Multiple Possibilities

One of the more interesting exhibitors at CES Unveiled was Artiris Parfum, which showcased its Compoz natural fragrance diffusion system. There are a number of vendors offering necklaces and masks that emit synthetic odors for individual scent-enhanced VR and AR experiences. Paris-based Artiris Parfum offers a system that lightly diffuses customized, programmable blends of up to five all-natural fragrances into a room to create a group programmable olfactory experience. Continue reading CES: Fragrance Diffusion System Has Multiple Possibilities

ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

The Entertainment Technology Center at The University of Southern California (ETC) will produce “vETC | The Grand Convergence 2019: Innovation and Integration,” its 5th annual virtual conference, August 27-28, 2019, in Los Angeles, highlighting significant presentations of emerging technologies and their impact on the M&E industry. The presentations will be recorded and posted to our YouTube channel. The Initial Expression of Interest seeking speakers and topics is open through Friday, August 9. Specific areas of concentration include 5G, AI, machine learning, adaptive production, blockchain, immersive media, virtual beings, and streaming. We welcome additional topics. Speakers will present concepts, workflows, business models, case studies, etc. Please no sales pitches! If you are interested in consideration, click here for more information. Continue reading ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

The Entertainment Technology Center at The University of Southern California (ETC) will produce “vETC | The Grand Convergence 2019: Innovation and Integration,” its 5th annual virtual conference, August 27-28, 2019, in Los Angeles, highlighting significant presentations of emerging technologies and their impact on the M&E industry. The presentations will be recorded and posted to our YouTube channel. The Initial Expression of Interest seeking speakers and topics is open through Friday, August 9. Specific areas of concentration include 5G, AI, machine learning, adaptive production, blockchain, immersive media, virtual beings, and streaming. We welcome additional topics. Speakers will present concepts, workflows, business models, case studies, etc. Please no sales pitches! If you are interested in consideration, click here for more information. Continue reading ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

The Entertainment Technology Center at The University of Southern California (ETC) will produce “vETC | The Grand Convergence 2019: Innovation and Integration,” its 5th annual virtual conference, August 27-28, 2019, in Los Angeles, highlighting significant presentations of emerging technologies and their impact on the M&E industry. The presentations will be recorded and posted to our YouTube channel. The Initial Expression of Interest seeking speakers and topics is open through Friday, August 9. Specific areas of concentration include 5G, AI, machine learning, adaptive production, blockchain, immersive media, virtual beings, and streaming. We welcome additional topics. Speakers will present concepts, workflows, business models, case studies, etc. Please no sales pitches! If you are interested in consideration, click here for more information. Continue reading ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

The Entertainment Technology Center at The University of Southern California (ETC) will produce “vETC | The Grand Convergence 2019: Innovation and Integration,” its 5th annual virtual conference, August 27-28, 2019, in Los Angeles, highlighting significant presentations of emerging technologies and their impact on the M&E industry. The presentations will be recorded and posted to our YouTube channel. The Initial Expression of Interest seeking speakers and topics is open through Friday, August 9. Specific areas of concentration include 5G, AI, machine learning, adaptive production, blockchain, immersive media, virtual beings, and streaming. We welcome additional topics. Speakers will present concepts, workflows, business models, case studies, etc. Please no sales pitches! If you are interested in consideration, click here for more information. Continue reading ETC Virtual Conference: Call for Speakers Deadline Aug. 9

Cinemark, Spaces Partner for Location-Based VR Experience

On February 8, Cinemark Holdings, in partnership with Spaces, will open VR entertainment centers at its Century 20 Oakridge and XD facility in San Jose, California, located at the Westfield Oakridge Shopping Center. Burbank-based Spaces, which spun out of DreamWorks, opened its first VR experience, based on “Terminator: Salvation,” in Irvine. Spaces offers more sensors and haptic feedback than a home VR experience, with physical features including ramps and motion platforms for a more realistic experience. Continue reading Cinemark, Spaces Partner for Location-Based VR Experience

Dreamscape Immersive to Expand Location-Based VR in 2019

Dreamscape Immersive focuses on creating virtual reality experiences as location-based entertainment in malls and other venues. From the entrance, a “departure lounge” that immerses visitors in backstories and props, titles such as “Alien Zoo” and “Lavan’s Magic Projector: The Lost Pearl” are intended to feel like journeys. Dreamscape chief executive Bruce Vaughn, who was former chief creative officer of Walt Disney Imagineering said it’s about reframing how audiences view virtual reality. Continue reading Dreamscape Immersive to Expand Location-Based VR in 2019