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Disney Just Invested Big Time in Virtual Reality

Disney Just Invested Big Time in Virtual Reality

There’s no denying it now, virtual reality is here, and it’s soon to be right there in your living room. Jaunt VR is a software start-up company that provides an “immersive reality experience,” and they just received some mega-funding from The Walt Disney Company. $66 million, to be exact.

When I said immersive, I really meant it. While Jaunt lets companies like Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Sony Morpheus take care of the headsets required for virtual reality, they are currently working out everything else: how to get movies, TV shows, news broadcasts, and live events to all the various virtual reality devices that are on the way. Oh, and they also have a fully-fledged studio to create virtual reality films, built-in cameras to shoot 360 degrees, software to transfer files to any device, and an app to bring their offerings to mobile tablets.

Their CEO, Jens Christensen, told Buzzfeed News, “we want to be one of the few bookmarks in the VR world.” And Jaunt is wasting no time in making that happen. Last week it was announced that they partnered with ABC News for ABC’s inaugural virtual reality broadcast. For an example of how this partnership is benefiting both parties, Jaunt gave one of their news teams an early version of their “Neo” camera to bring to Syria and record an immersive experience from Damascus. Now the results can be streamed via the Jaunt app, or on ABC’s website.

This funding round is, for Christensen, a “strategic” round, where companies can get in on the ground floor, before virtual reality truly takes off. From the information I’m armed with, it seems like Jaunt is taking the right steps toward building solid relationships, and a foundation for successful, creative collaboration in the new age of virtual reality.

Follow Jaunt VR on Twitter @jauntvr for more updates as they move forward, and let us know what you think of the news in the comments below.

HT: Buzzfeed News

IMAGE: Jae C. Hong/AP

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