The aquariums are located in Arizona and Connecticut.
Last month, UK-based virtual reality (VR) company Immotion Group – which specialises in location-based entertainment (LBE) – announced a new experience called Swimming with Humpbacks. This caught the attention of several zoo’s and aquariums, prompting two North American aquariums to order installations from Immotion.
The company will install a range of VR cinematic motion pods at Odysea Aquarium, in Scottsdale, Arizona, and The Maritime Aquarium, in Norwalk, Connecticut – two major aquariums which have a total footfall exceeding 1.5 million customers per year. This continues Immotion Group’s success which recently saw the company win a contract with Merlin Entertainments Plc. to add its VR platform to Lego Discovery Centre, Legoland, and SeaLife locations.
“We are thrilled to have signed up three major aquariums so quickly after the release of our “Swimming with Humpbacks” VR movie. Demand for immersive ”Edutainment’ is growing, and interest from the zoo and aquarium industry is at an all-time high,” said Rod Findley, Group Commercial Director, Immotion Group in a statement. “Immotion Group can deliver something new and unique to their customers, while also providing valuable ancillary revenue. Working in partnership with larger venues we are able to install a tailored solution at no cost to the venue, rather providing on-going revenue share agreement, creating solid annuity revenues for both parties.”
Due to the interest generated, Immotion Group is developing more content for this new audience as part of its Blue Ocean series of underwater VR experiences, which Swimming with Humpbacks is the first instalment.
A 360-degree video, Swimming with Humpbacks provides a rare glimpse and insight into one of the ocean’s most mysterious creatures, the giant Humpback whale. Cinematographer Jeff Hester was brought in to film the whales as they migrated from Antartica to the Kingdom of Tonga during mating season.
“We are thrilled to be able to film in VR some of the most amazing ocean creatures. It was a pleasure to film the Humpbacks,” Ken Musen, Director of Immersive Live Action at Immotion Group adds. “What the team has managed to capture is truly amazing. In the next month, we will set off to film sharks, which for way too long have been vilified. This new film will allow our customers to get up close and personal with these majestic creatures.”