Yesterday during the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) conference in Las Vegas, US-based digital production and visual effects company Digital Domain unveiled a new end-to-end solution for virtual reality (VR) content creators and distributors. The platform consists of a new spherical camera for 360-degrees broadcasting, new integrations with post-production suites and advanced live streaming capabilities, as well as a new cloud-based VR distribution platform.
Digital Domain’s new VR camera dubbed Kronos has been optimized for 360-degree live broadcasting and “situational awareness applications,” according to the company. It’s capable of recording 4K videos at 60 frames per second and features integrated 360 audio as well as gyro-stabilization. The unit transmits data and draws electrical current through a single cable which facilitates its ease of use in remote configurations, and the entire package is also water-resistant. Moving on beyond hardware, Digital Domain’s new end-to-end solution includes patented live-stitching software which uses techniques for mixing graphics from a variety of sources in a 360-degree sphere without distortion. The software suite also includes advanced director’s tools like multi-camera streams and “virtual cameraman” capabilities, and directors can make use of Digital Domain’s visual effects capabilities to enhance their products. Last but not least, the company’s end-to-end solution relies on a new cloud-based VR distribution system offering delivery to multiple destinations such as web, mobile, and VR headsets, as well as platform-agnostic distribution for a variety of ecosystems, including Android, iOS, Samsung Gear VR, Google Daydream, HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and more. The cloud platform includes SDKs (Software Development Kits) and APIs (Application Programming Interface) for distributing or embedding 360-degree content into existing websites and mobile applications.
Digital Domain previously offered its expertise to the National Basketball Association (NBA) and helped create the first sports talk show in VR, House of Legends. According to Jeff Marsilio, Vice President of Global Media Distribution at NBA, having the ability to work with a single partner for VR production, development, and distribution “makes good business sense” given the complexity entailed by the creation of VR content. Digital Domain’s new end-to-end solution has been in development for more than a year now, and after working with its customers and partners, the company believes that the platform is now tested and “scalable to millions of viewers.”