While athletes were winning medals and breaking world records, Atticus Digital was busy delivering the world’s first live 360° press conferences with Team GB Olympic athletes.
Atticus was commissioned by M&C Saatchi, Sport & Entertainment to provide a series of press conferences with Team GB for Samsung UK.
Journalists were virtually transported from London to Rio using Samsung Gear VR headsets. This enabled them to look around the British House and talk live with athletes such as Helen Glover, Sir Bradley Wiggins, Becky James and Sir Steve Redgrave.
One of the biggest issues this challenge faced was the signal delay. Atticus worked with London based Streaming Tank to deliver the live stream from Rio de Janeiro. However initial tests suffered delays of up to 8 seconds, which would have been unacceptable and almost impossible to have a two-way conversation. So after weeks of research and development, not to mention several days of live testing, we succeeded in getting the delay down to around 2 seconds which allowed a good interview experience.
Not only did we have to get the signal to London but the VR headsets were untethered so the broadcast had to be wireless. Atticus developed a bespoke app for the Samsung Galaxy S7 devices to live stream the 360˚ video, this also proved challenging as we needed to reduce WiFi interference to ensure consistent playback, without any buffering.
The virtual reality press conference was a success and the journalists really enjoyed the experience, feeling as though they had actually been to the British House in Rio. Thankfully Team GB allowed access to a dedicated 15GB broadband connection in the house, which ensured a stable signal. Ensuring the audio was of good quality was really important, Atticus enlisted the help of Hoot Studios to record and relay the audio making sure it was in sync with the video signal.
Atticus used 3 specially adapted GoPro cameras, each with 250˚ lenses for the live broadcast and recorded the interviews on Samsung Gear 360 cameras. And for the anoraks amongst you, Streaming Tank used RTSP technology to broadcast 1080p 360˚ video at 6 MBPS. A big thank you to On-Par Productions for their help and for shooting the behind-the-scenes video.
Atticus also produced a 360˚ VR Tour of the British House which you can view here.