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Netflix streams into virtual reality, shares up nearly 6%


Netflix’s latest original content was created along with Oculus VR — a virtual reality app for Samsung’s Gear VR headsets.

The streaming provider showed off the new app, available now in the Oculus VR app store, on Thursday at the three-day Oculus Connect 2 conference in L.A. The app creates a virtual living room for the viewer to watch in. Your gaze and clicking on the side of the Gear VR headset let you navigate and choose what to watch.

Oculus chief technology officer John Carmack announced the app in the afternoon on a day when Netflix shares were slowly climbing. Netflix (NFLX) closed at $103.76 up 5.8%.


Carmack said he met with Netflix engineers last month and work began on the app, which was expected to hit the Oculus VR app store Thursday. “It was very rewarding to be able to do this work right before Oculus Connect and make it available to all of our users in such a short timeframe,” Carmack said. His comments were also posted on the Netflix tech blog. “Plus, I got to watch the entire season of Daredevil from the comfort of my virtual couch. Because testing, of course.”


Netflix isn’t the lone video provider headed into virtual reality. Movie studios 20th Century Fox and Lionsgate, as well as Hulu, Twitch, TiVo and Vimeo announced plans for VR apps.

“Providing viewers with dynamic environments of their choice and themed around their favorite shows provides a whole new level of engagement, which together with our cinematic VR experiences makes Hulu an exciting VR destination,” Hulu vice president of device platforms Julian Eggebrecht on Hulu’s blog.

Hulu VR-LivingRoom3

Follow Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider

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