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Nokia Technologies has confirmed the European sales launch of the OZO professional VR camera and new post-production partnerships to advance end-to-end solutions for creating VR experiences. Hosted at London’s indigo at the O2 arena, the event included demonstrations of OZO’s features such as real-time VR preview, wireless operation, and full 3D 360 VR audio and video live broadcast capabilities.
“OZO enables the creation of immersive virtual reality experiences that actually move us emotionally, and move us to act,” said Ramzi Haidamus, president of Nokia Technologies. “Through OZO we can feel more present in the lives of people we’ve never met, and widen the circle of empathy in ways we could never have imagined before. Technology that moves us this deeply is technology that moves us all forward.”
In addition to bringing OZO’s category-defining features to the European market, Nokia Technologies also announced post-production partnerships to facilitate the content production workflow. Uncertainty about available workflow and tools for VR content creation has been a major concern for the creative community, and with these partnerships OZO provides a comprehensive solution.
Deluxe will provide high quality post-production services for OZO VR content, including editorial, stitching and colour. Deluxe will also harness the talents of more than 3,000 global artists in the Deluxe Creative Artist Group, including premier talent from Company 3, Method Studios and StereoD, to support VR experiences created with OZO.
Additionally, Nokia Technologies announced that post-production software tools from London-based The Foundry, including NUKE, will soon support 3D content created with OZO.
The launch event featured a live broadcast 360 VR concert from band John Bull and the Bandits, who played 11 kilometres away at London’s The Park Plaza Westminster Bridge Hotel. Enabled by technology from partners Elemental Technologies and Akamai, the demonstration highlighted OZO’s ability to provide a totally immersive live experience to viewers, allowing them to put on a VR headset and be transported to another location.
John Wallace, CEO of Deluxe said: “Our history as a technological innovator, specifically our pre-eminence in the 3D and VFX arena, make Deluxe an ideal partner for Nokia’s VR initiative. Our collaboration with OZO allows us to provide high quality post-production rendering to create the highest level of VR experiences. We are tremendously excited by the capture capabilities of the OZO for the professional broadcast community — the first time a dedicated camera has been developed for this sector.”
Simon Robinson, co-founder and chief scientist at The Foundry, added: “The Foundry believes Nokia’s OZO camera is an important step for professional content creation in VR. We’re very pleased to be collaborating directly with the OZO team to find solutions to some of the challenges presented by VR content, and deliver new tools to achieve the highest fidelity that the camera can offer.”
OZO is priced at €55,000 in the EMEA region.
In parallel, Nokia announced the OZO Pioneer Program aimed at enabling innovative virtual reality content.that demonstrate the full potential of the medium. Participants in the programme will create VR content using the OZO professional VR camera. The programme is open to applications and purchases through April 30, 2016.
“Virtual Reality is the next frontier in storytelling, and OZO is designed to provide professional content creators with an innovative solution to produce great VR experiences,” said Paul Melin, Vice President of Digital Media at Nokia Technologies. “Nokia wants to help drive the creation of content that demonstrates the possibilities of this medium in collaboration with innovators at the cutting edge of VR production, and the Pioneer Program is designed to tap into the full creativity of the VR community.”
Participants in the Programme will create a 1-minute demo clip using their OZO and participate in workshop sessions with Nokia Technologies teams and other content creators to share their experiences in creating VR content. The Program participants will also receive a $15,000 discount on their purchase of OZO (€15,000 in the European region).