Sky is launching a pair of F1 experiences that will literally put Oculus Rift and Gear VRs users in the driving seat this Friday.
The videos will see fans able to immerse themselves in two films shot during testing races in Barcelona, taking them to the garages, the pit lane and ultimately, out onto the track.
The two F1 videos herald the arrival of Sky VR Studios, a new in-house production team that’s dedicated entirely to VR (Virtual Reality) experiences.
Related: Best VR Headset – Which VR headset should I buy?, How to watch VR videos on your Android phoneSky’s got big plans for a whole range of sports, movies, entertainment and VR content delivered in 360 degree VR. In the past we’ve seen Sky take news crews to cover the refugee crisis in Greece and partner with Jaunt and Warner Bros. for this fun Hobbit-themed experience. More recently, Sky Movies trialled the technology at the recent premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The racing videos, shot in conjunction with Formula 1 Management and Williams Martini Racing, will launch on Facebook 360 Video from tomorrow, where they’ll be available to anyone with an Oculus or Gear VR headset. Eventually, Sky hopes to launch its own Sky VR app through which you’ll will be able to download a whole range of videos.
Gary Davey, Sky’s managing director of content, said: “The Sky VR Studio allows us to add a new dimension to storytelling, taking viewers to extraordinary places and offering a unique perspective on a whole host of events. The development of VR technology is moving at an incredible pace and excitement is building about its potential.
“Our expertise across a wide range of video content, from original drama to live sport, gives us a unique ability to bring VR to life for customers. This is just the start and we’re looking forward to creating more amazing VR content and exploring the possibilities with our tech and content partners.”
Upcoming experiences will include VR footage of the Tour de France and a look at heavyweight boxer Anthony Joshua’s bid for the world title, which sound interesting, if you’ve ever wanted to experience what it feels like to get your face bashed in by a professional fighter.
Given Sky’s long association with Game of Thrones, we’d be surprised if this ‘Ascend the Wall’ video didn’t make it to the Sky VR app in the future – although we daresay your living room isn’t equipped to fully replicate the experience.