MLB, Intel Ink Three-Year Deal To Deliver Live, VOD VR Content

Content will be available for free via the Intel True VR app during 2017 MLB regular season, beginning June 6

Intel has agreed to a three-year deal with Major League Baseball to bring virtual-reality experiences to baseball fans with Intel True VR. Starting June 6, Intel will live-stream one weekly, out-of-market game every Tuesday via the Intel True VR app, in addition to featuring postgame highlights and on-demand replays of each game.

Beginning next week, Intel True VR will live-stream one MLB game every Tuesday. Available via the Intel True VR app, the technology uses multiple panoramic, stereoscopic camera pods to create a more natural, realistic, and immersive view that brings MLB fans closer to the action. (Photo: Intel)

The live Intel True VR Game of the Week, which will be available to fans for free, will deploy an array of 4K-resolution cameras and offer users the ability to control their vantage point by selecting from up to four camera angles per game or a produced VR broadcast experience. Fans will also have access to up-to-the-moment player and team statistics throughout the game, including pitcher and batter data, and will hear exclusive in-app commentary.

“As a VR partner of MLB, Intel is delivering a truly immersive virtual-reality live stream where fans can experience the excitement of being at the ballpark every week,” says James Carwana, GM, Intel Sports Group. “The addition of live stats to the Intel True VR weekly game is another example of how we’re giving fans more control to personalize their baseball experience.”

Says Kenny Gersh, EVP, business, MLBAM, “We are excited to bring the Intel True VR experience to fans around the country every week. Our partnership with Intel will keep MLB at the forefront of technological innovation for our fans, bringing them closer to the action.”

At a selected stadium every Tuesday, the mobile production room will capture and process MLB game footage from multiple Intel True VR cameras, which generate up to 1 TB of data per hour. (Photo: Intel)

The Intel True VR Game of the Week experience will be available free of charge through the Intel True VR app (available on the Oculus store) via a Samsung Gear VR headset.

Fans will be able to access the Intel True VR experience for the following games in June 2017:

  • Cleveland Indians vs. Colorado Rockies on June 6 at 8:40 p.m. ET/5:40 p.m. PT
  • Kansas City Royals vs. San Francisco Giants on June 13 at 10:15 p.m. ET/7:15 p.m. PT
  • Detroit Tigers vs. Seattle Mariners on June 20 at 10:10 p.m. ET/7:10 p.m. PT
  • St. Louis Cardinals vs. Arizona Diamondbacks on June 27 at 9:40 p.m. ET/6:40 p.m. PT

The Intel True VR Game of the Week” enables MLB fans to personalize their virtual-reality experience with multiple camera angles, postgame highlights, on-demand content and statistics. Viewers use a Samsung Gear VR headset after downloading the Intel True VR app. (Photo: Intel)

The Intel announcement marks the league’s latest foray into VR: MLBAM announced last month that it will launch an At-Bat virtual-reality app for Google Daydream (which debuted June 1). With At Bat VR, users can consume live games — and many of the data-filled features fans have come to expect — in a new way. The app offers a fully immersive, 360-degree environment in which users can access a 3D strike zone, historical and real-time Statcast-powered data, and interactive information like scores, stats, and standings. An MLB.TV subscription also unlocks premium video options, including live-streaming games and full archived games with DVR functionality.

The Intel/MLB VR deal caps a busy week of VR announcements in the U.S., coming on the heels of the news that Fox Sports will deliver the Champions League Final in VR and Samsung is launching VR Live Pass featuring live VR experiences for UFC and X Games.

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