Today announced a true social VR experience that lets consumers experience photos and videos together with friends - between VR devices and smartphones - while talking and live chatting at the same time. This immersive VR experience connects all VR and smartphone users using a broader spectrum of media content and social interactivity.
The company also announced further seed-round funding from GVA Launch Gurus and Bengala Investments totaling $750,000, underscoring strong interest in the fast-growing "live video" market. The investment will be used for engineering, product development and marketing initiatives that will drive continued momentum for DabKick. Additionally, Vadim Balashov, Investment Advisor from GVA Launch Gurus, and Ranjith Kumaran, serial entrepreneur and current CEO of HighTail, will join CEO Balaji Krishnan on DabKick's Board of Directors.
DabKick is extending its patented "media call" technology to include virtual reality functionality, creating a new market for "social VR" that connects the emerging virtual reality ecosystem with the established smartphone ecosystem, an industry first. DabKick invented the Media Call, a new form of live communication that enables users to view almost any form of digital media, including video, photos and music, together and in real time regardless of location, and allowing them to communicate back and forth while viewing content. The new VR functionality enhances the Media Call experience by giving VR users the ability to view their contents together with smartphone users, and vice versa. This update helps deliver DabKick's vision for the next generation of live communication, surpassing audio and video calls with a new immersive experience that visually enriches communication and deepens the emotional connection between users.
Designed, built and optimized for speed on smartphones and across mobile networks, Media Call for VR links the immersive VR experience with the social aspects of interacting with friends, family and acquaintances through media. Media Call for VR goes above and beyond typical screen sharing technology for social VR, offering multi-directional capabilities - enabling VR device users to choose content to view with other DabKick users on smartphones, tablets and other VR devices, who in turn can show contents within the same live session in order to create a true in-person experience. DabKick also enables users to change or show their own media and watch together while interacting live, offering a breakthrough social experience for the VR environment, which encourages users to stay within it for a longer duration of time.
"DabKick invented the Media Call, and our app continues to gain traction in the critical areas of downloads and user engagement," commented DabKick CEO Balaji Krishnan. "Bringing Media Call for VR is a key milestone in executing against our vision to deliver a seamless, rich media experience across any number of devices, including smartphones, tablets and connected TVs, and we are thrilled that our investors have shown such confidence in DabKick and increased their stake in the fast-growing market for live video.
"To further position DabKick as a player in the VR space, the company is partnering with Ericsson to create a VR cross-platform social experience that will increase VR adoption and user engagement in both VR devices and smartphones. The partnership will also create more value for telcos who can potentially monetize the engagement.
"DabKick's new VR functionality is a significant development for mobile carriers and device manufacturers," said Diomedes Kastanis, vice president and head of innovation at Ericsson. "A cross-platform social VR experience has amazing potential to increase VR adoption and user engagement across both the VR device and smartphone markets. Utilizing Ericsson's UDN technology and high-speed network, like 5G, will amplify the capability to connect, thereby driving greater value for telcos, extending the potential to monetize the deeper user engagement."
DabKick will be at CES where it will be demoing its VR functionality as part of Ericsson's booth. To see a demo or meet with DabKick and Ericsson, please visit Central Hall: Stand #10939.
The DabKick App: Deep User Engagement
The patented DabKick app engages and entertains people who are interested in sports, video games, funny videos, selfies and music. DabKick's popularity among today's "digital natives" and the millennial generation means that the company has seen record-breaking engagement and video/content sharing numbers since the app's debut. Some 45 percent of active DabKick users spend an average of 30 minutes per day inside the application and share 95 percent of video content across cellular data networks, versus being tethered to Wi-Fi. These metrics have exceeded the company's own benchmarks and underscore DabKick's position as the anytime, anywhere solution for watching media together while commenting and interacting live.
Founded by Balaji Krishnan in 2012, DabKick is a free mobile communications app that allows people to interact live with friends while watching videos, showing photos and listening to music together. DabKick creates a fun, in-person experience that allows you and your friends to chat live while enjoying media together. Current investors include GREE, Digital Garage, Visionnaire Ventures, Plug & Play, GVA and PointGrey ventures.