As announced in our Mixed Reality piece, over the past months, we have tried various hybrid formats in our Extended Reality or Mixed Reality Studio (XR Studio), testing differences in the use and creativity of technical applications within this domain. We have also been working on real-life hybrid event solutions for a Fortune 500 client, as well as other digital activations for musicians and film screenings. It’s been a busy 6 months. The learning curve was sharp, and although we discovered the power of virtual elements, I still came to the belief that live cannot be replaced, but rather very powerfully enhanced by a virtual experience. For that to happen, “virtual” cannot just mean live streams but has to be engaging and new. In the following, I will share some of the insights we gained and will hopefully inspire readers to lean into interactivity in digital formats, and not to shy away from experimentation.
Another workflow technology we’ve been using in our XR Studio is Notch, which offers real-time graphics for virtual production. We spoke to the founder of Notch, Matt Swoboda, about his initial vision for the company, how that vision has changed and how to stay on top of the game when it comes to creating hybrid experiences for audiences in the coming years.
With events going digital, technology has become even more so indispensable. We have been using disguise’s XR workflows within our hybrid event productions. So the opportunity to speak to Peter Kirkup, Global Technical Solutions Manager at disguise, about their vision for the future of events, was particularly relevant to us and our quest to develop new engaging formats.
Peter heads a team that is responsible for technical pre-sales. He manages the demo setup for customers. Therefore, Peter does not only have a good understanding of the newest technological features on the market, but also of the creatives‘ and end customers‘ needs. The conversation was especially interesting in terms of gaining a greater understanding of what digital elements enhance the immersive dimension of an event.
We’ve been approached by various clients asking how they can benefit from a digital event format, as well as from the more lavish effects that are being used at live stream events for online audiences. They took their inspiration from events like car launches hosted by Mercedes, BMW and MAN Truck & Bus, and most recently Apple’s virtual WWD conference, which often displays high-end production technology and sophisticated virtual studios common to TV or film sets. However, one of their key concerns seems to be whether these digital solutions are reserved for Fortune 500 companies, or if they can also serve the little guys?