We enjoy shining the spotlight on our own backyard, particularly when there is something awesome to shine it on. New York City has become a hub of startup activity and with a great group of Virtual reality companies in the mix. Of course, we would be remiss to exclude the NYT and The Huffington Post, but our focus here are the niche players in the Virtual reality space.
Let us know who you think should be on the list but isn’t.
1. Empathetic Media
VR is gaining attention for its ability to foster empathy. Empathetic Media is a production studio specializing in developing custom storytelling and platform solutions for popular consumption of 3D immersive content. They don’t want you to just read the news, they want you to experience it. Supported on mobile, tablets, desktops to fully immersive virtual reality via the Oculus Rift headset, they work to tailor the solution for their customers.
IrisVR utilizes VR to solve a major problem in the architecture, construction, and engineering industries. What will a space actually look and feel like when it’s built? IrisVR allows users to create, edit, share, and visualize 3D models in virtual reality. They currently have two VR software solutions, a desktop app and a mobile app. They landed $8M in Series A funding in October 2016.
This is really cool. LiveLikeVR is the world’s first VR platform that lets you watch live sporting events with your friends. Your friends are spread all over the world and you want to watch the game together, now you can. LiveLikeVR works with Cardboard (INSERT Affiliate Link Here) for Android and IOS as well as Samsung GearVR.
KonceptVR is a full-service VR agency consisting of filmmakers, producers, and sound engineers with the mission to provide the best 360º VR stories available. They have produced 360 videos for Jay Leno’s Garage (a personal favorite), the Broadway hit Hamilton, The School of Rock and much, much more.
We enjoy the utilization of VR for industries outside of gaming. The potential is unlimited. InsiteVR landed $1.5M in Series A funding in August 2016 to tap into the architecture and construction markets and make early visions of projects more accessible to these industries’ clients through VR. Customers of InsiteVR can upload their models to the service and view them on Gear VR, Oculus Rift or HTC Vive virtual reality headsets.
6. VR/AR Association – NYC Chapter
The VR/AR Association is an international organization designed to foster collaboration between innovative companies and people in the virtual reality and augmented reality ecosystem that accelerates growth, fosters research and education, helps develop industry standards, connects member organizations and promotes the services of member companies. They recently launched TheDirectory, a database of over a 1000 VR and AR companies. Check out our article here: INSERT Link http://virtualrealityobserver.com/vrar-association-announces-the-launch-of-thedirectory/
Founded in August 2013, Littlstar is a global network dedicated exclusively to virtual reality, 360 video, and immersive experiences. Littlstar has channels from VR content creators such as ABC, Showtime, Disney, Nat Geo, Discovery, PBS, Red Bull, Virgin and more. They have apps for iOS, Android, Google Cardboard, Gear VR, Oculus Rift, Sony Playstation VR, Apple TV, and the web.
8. Hyperverse VR
VR Observer had an opportunity to experience Hyperverse’s virtual world and it was awesome. Roman Mikailov and Arsen Avdalyan are two of the co-founders of Hyperverse. Their goal is to create the largest indoor VR theme park that brings an emotionally invoking experience closer to people. China and Australia already have a few of VR parks and we expect to see the VR theme park to grow exponentially in the coming years as the technology and content improve.
And, not a company, but we are looking forward to what this means for the NYC VR scene:
A new lab will soon launch in New York City designed to support growing startups working in the augmented and virtual reality fields, making it the first publicly-funded initiative of its kind in the U.S. It’s a joint effort between the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME), which issues filming permits and facilitates film and media production throughout the city.
Image credit: Empathetic Media