HTC’s VR for Impact program’s first winners are SpaceVR — who will be launching the first VR satellite.
Earlier this year, HTC announced its VR for Impact program as an effort to provide opportunity to develop and share ideas in impactful ways by funding and supporting content and technologies that create the most powerful experiences to transform our world. The $10 million program was initiated in support of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals especially dedicated to showing how VR can lead to a positive impact and change. It appears like HTC has finally found its first funding recipients.
The company recently announced that SpaceVR will be launching the first VR satellite into space on the Space X shuttle later this year. This will be used to stream footage that can either be watched in full VR or as 360-degree video. In other words, viewers will receive a first-person, satellite’s point of view experience of the outer space.
Other projects that have won the first round of VR of Impact program are Tree and The Extraordinary Honey Bee. While Tree is a haptic-enhanced VR experience that explores the life and fate of a rainforest tree, highlighting the widespread pattern of deforestation and its impacts on the environment; The Extraordinary Honey Bee explores the alarming rate at which the honeybee population is depleting. These movies have been created to increase awareness about the importance of these rising problems.
All three projects will be available through HTC’s Viveport store once they are complete. While SpaceVR, Tree and The Extraordinary Honey Bee are the first three grants awarded as part of the program, HTC will continue to announce additional recipients for 2017 throughout the year.