Cinemas backing ‘immersive’ 4D technology

Cinema owners are rapidly investing in advanced immersive technology, says a report from IHS Media & Technology.

The report says the rationale is that ‘sensory’ seats and other 4D additional influences are key to differentiating cinema experiences from watching TV.

There are two main types, says IHS: Immersive Motion Seating, one version of which is supplied by D-box, with just over 50 per cent of a fast-growing market, and 4DX (marketed as 4Dplex) with some 32 per cent of the market.

Quebec-based D-box Technologies’ seats are motorised in such a way to create an effect of movement, timed precisely with that of visual images, and making the audience feel that they’re tilting back and forth or moving up or down. The seats can also vibrate and shake in time with explosions and other kinds of action sequences. D-box cinemas also tend to show a release in 3D, and movies such as the Fast & Furious series as well as the new Black Panther box-office hit are available in certain theatres in 4D.IHS says D-box had 615 screens equipped as at last June, although most of its screens only have a limited number of ‘premium’ D-box seats.

Its main rival is South Korean 4Dplex offers a similar suite of products, and as at last June had some 1219 screens having added 127 in the first half-year of 2017.

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