Between January 2016 and June 2018, ImmersiaTV will create a novel form of broadcast omnidirectional video, content production and delivery that offers end-users a coherent audiovisual experience across head mounted displays, second screens and the traditional TV set, instead of having their attention divided across them. This novel kind of content will seamlessly integrate with and further augment traditional TV and second display consumer habits. ImmersiaTV will assemble an end-to-end toolset covering the entire audiovisual value chain: immersive production tools, support for omnidirectional cameras, including ultra-high definition and high dynamic range images, and adaptive content coding and delivery, and demonstrate it through 3 pilot demonstrations addressing both on-demand and live content delivery.
ImmersiaTV – Immersive Experiences around TV, an integrated toolset for the production and distribution of immersive and interactive content across devices
The majority of European TV consumers now watch TV programs in a multi-display environment. Second screens -mostly smartphones, tablets or laptops- are generally used to check information not directly related to the events in the TV content being watched. As a result, the attention of the audience is generally divided between these different streams of information. Broadcasters have tried to orchestrate all these different rendering platforms to complement each other consistently. However, their success is limited, and this limited success is due, at least in part, to the very different formats in which information is delivered (web-based texts, mobile apps, traditional broadcast television, etc.).
In this context, the arrival of immersive head-mounted displays to the consumer market introduces new possibilities, but also poses new challenges. Immersive displays impose radically different audience requirements compared to traditional broadcast TV and social media. In addition, immersive displays challenge the conventions of traditional audiovisual language. For example, cuts between shots, which constitute the very basic fabric of traditional cinematic language, do not work well in immersive displays. From a user perspective, omnidirectional TV offers a new user experience and a different way of engaging with the audiovisual content.
In parallel, the evolution of digital broadband streaming and capture devices has transformed the production and delivery of omnidirectional video from an experimental proof of concept to an industrial possibility. In addition, recent advances in computer graphics have blurred the line between 3D synthetic content -animation movies and videogames- and omnidirectional video streams.
This project will create new forms of digital storytelling and broadcast production that, by putting omnidirectional video at the center of the creation, production and distribution of broadcast content, delivers an all-encompassing experience that integrates the specificities of immersive displays, and the feeling of “being there”, within the contemporary living room. We propose a new form of broadcast omnidirectional video that offers end-users a coherent audiovisual experience across head mounted displays, second screens and the traditional TV set, instead of having their attention divided across them. This new experience will seamlessly integrate with and further augment traditional TV and second screen consumer habits. In other terms: the audience will still be able to watch TV sitting on their couch, or tweet comments about it. However, by putting omnidirectional content at the center of the creation, production and distribution processes, the audience will also be able to use immersive displays to feel like being inside the audiovisual stream.
ImmersiaTV is an innovation project funded by the H2020 program.