NBA, NextVR To Produce 27 Live Games in VR This Season
All 30 NBA teams will be included in the programming lineup
For the second straight year, the NBA is working with NextVR on a collection of live virtual-reality game broadcasts over the course of the upcoming season. On Thursday, the league unveiled a 27-game schedule that includes each of the NBA’s 30 teams that will be distributed within NextVR’s signature immersive 3D VR experience.
NextVR is set to roll out a set of new features for this year’s iteration, including live volumetric telestration, live infographics, and the live insertion of dynamic stats into the 360º environment. Returning from last year’s efforts are dedicated announcers, pre/postgame coverage, and immersion in in-arena entertainment.
“By committing to a schedule of VR games, we’ve been able to listen to fan feedback in real time and deploy improvements on a weekly basis,” says Jeff Marsilio, VP, global media distribution, NBA. “The fan response has been overwhelmingly positive, and we look forward to seeing their reaction to this year’s new VR capabilities.”
The full lineup of live VR events begins with a free preview on Oct. 21 with a game between the Dallas Mavericks at the Houston Rockets. To access the VR streams, a user must be a subscriber to NBA League Pass. Fans will be able to authenticate their accounts by providing their NBA League Pass login credentials through the NBA League Pass VR section of NextVR’s app.
Also new to the product is the NextVR Screen Room, a destination where fans can watch any NBA League Pass game on a big–movie-theater-like screen within the VR environment.
A fan with a Samsung GearVR headset or Google Daydream, along with a compatible smartphone, can download the free NextVR app from the Oculus Store or the Google Play Store, respectively. Microsoft Windows Mixed Reality joins the party this season. NBA VR content will be available on that platform beginning Oct. 17.