VIRTUAL + AUGMENTED REALITY
In other Major League Baseball news, the league is about to launch new 360-degree video features. Come June 1, MLB’s At Bat app will feature a VR mode. Users will be able to access features such as a 3D strike-zone cube that sits directly in front of them, and a collection of 360-degree on-demand videos. Live games still won’t be available for 360-degree viewing. The feature will first be available for Android smartphones and Google Daydream headsets.
At its I/O developers conference, Google announced some new updates to its mobile-based Daydream VR platform. Along with the next version of Android (code-named Android O), Daydream will be updated to support Google’s Chromecast streaming device. In other words, Daydream users will be able to display their VR experiences on a nearby TV set for other viewers to watch.
Google ’s YouTube also has some new plans for 360-degree video. Google announced that YouTube will soon support 360-degree video for social watch parties, enabling as many as three users to watch a 360-degree video at the same time. Users will appear as customized avatars in shared rooms; voice chat features will let them talk about the videos in real-time. The update is slated to roll out later this year.
VC FUNDING + INVESTORS
Verizon has dipped another toe in the digital entertainment waters. Verizon Ventures, the telco’s venture capital arm, just led a new funding round for female-oriented digital media company Brit + Co. Brit + Co announced that it raised $15 million in total, bringing its fundraising to $45 million to date. The company says it will use the funding for advertising, merchandising initiatives, new online classes, and expanded editorial coverage. In addition, Brit + Co announced that Jeff Jones, Uber’s former President, will be joining the company as an advisor.
PLATFORMS, APPS + DEVICES
The music video service Vevo has revamped its Apple TV app. The update, which starts rolling out today, places a greater emphasis on curated playlists. The curation will vary based on context (e.g., the app might suggest different music videos based on the date or the time of day). The app also adds new personalization features, allowing it to learn from users over time in order to better tailor its content recommendations. The new features are somewhat similar to the updates Vevo made to its iOS app earlier this year.
Cross-device marketing technology company Tapad has partnered with Resonate, a provider of real-time consumer intelligence solutions. Under the partnership, Resonate will use Tapad’s proprietary Device Graph to gain a deeper understanding of its mobile app audiences. The goal, Resonate says, is to provide brands with a more direct connection to their intended customers.
OUR LAST TRIVIA QUESTION
If you saw the film Get Out this year, then you’re familiar with Daniel Kaluuya, who played the lead role. He also starred in one of the best episodes of Black Mirror. (In the latter role he uses his native English accent.) Which episode was it? (Email [email protected] with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and state.)
Our Last Trivia Questions: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’s Titus Burgess was credited with a small voice role in which video game? Answer: Grand Theft Auto V. Kudos to Andy Pittma- TAMU/TX, Kelli McCabe-Chicago Association of REALTORS®/IL, Louis Lewow-Lewow Media Group/GA, Susan Nessanbaum-Goldberg-M and S Entertainment/CA, David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/CA, Tom Moore-Kalt productions/CA, and Andrew Bellamy-Producers Guild of America/NY