Pixotope Launches Pixotope Pocket for Virtual Production Training
New mobile application enables students to use their mobile devices to produce immersive creative content with virtual tools
OSLO, Norway—As virtual production becomes much more widely used and studios struggle to find talent with virtual production expertise, Pixotope has launched Pixotope Pocket, a new product that aims to make it easier for educational institutions to train students in virtual production techniques and technologies.
Pixotope CEO Marcus B. Brodersen noted that as demand for virtual production technologies and expertise has exploded in recent years but that getting qualified professionals remains a major challenge.
“We started the Education Program as an answer to what we were picking up in the market from clients and production, which is basically that they were saying getting access to talent was a challenge,” he said. In the past year, Education Program has expanded to include universities in U.S., UK, Korea, Hong Kong, Chile, Italy and Japan. “Everyone is looking at it and trying to figure out how they can offer this to their students,” he said.
The release of Pixotope Pocket is designed to make that training even more accessible. As part of the Pixotope Education Program, the app gives aspiring virtual production professionals what they need most: easy, unfettered access to augmented reality (AR) and virtual studio (VS) tools and workflows, Brodersen said.
By circumventing the need for a fully equipped studio, students need only a smartphone running the latest iOS and a PC to create powerful and immersive content anywhere, even dorm rooms. It is also designed to be a less expensive option for schools.
“The introduction of Pixotope Pocket represents the next evolution of the Pixotope Education Program,” says Pixotope Education Program manager, Carina Schoo. “While we’ve made great strides in addressing the virtual production skills gap, we knew the technology could be made even more accessible to aspiring creators. The first step was to provide students access to our platform via their media facilities through the Pixotope Education Program. With Pixotope Pocket we are taking this one step further.”
Pixotope chief revenue officer, David Dowling, added that “The virtual production skills gap is often cited as one of the main barriers to adoption. This is because getting the technology into the hands of tomorrow’s creatives has historically been cost and resource-prohibitive. Pixotope Pocket addresses that head on and makes the technology even easier to access and use. The result is an exponential increase in opportunities for students to hone their skills outside of their school’s media production labs.”
This also expands the ways in which students can engage with virtual production tools and workflows. Students can now access virtual production tools via both their school's existing media production infrastructure and their own technology.
Brodersen also stressed that unlike traditional AR and VS workflows, with Pixotope Pocket there is no need for a professional camera plus specific tracking hardware. The user can use the camera of their mobile phone to shoot footage while Pixotope Pocket takes care of the camera tracking. It does this by combining device motion tracking, camera scene capture, and advanced scene processing. Video and tracking data are transmitted via SRT stream through a local network to the local machine that has Pixotope Graphics installed.
Brodersen noted that Pixotope Education Program partner, University of Gloucestershire, played a crucial role in bringing Pixotope Pocket to market. To ensure that Pixotope Pocket meets the needs of today’s virtual production students with precision, a group of students from the Digital Media course tested the app in a workshop and provided valuable feedback.
“In order for our students to succeed in their careers they need to be able to understand technology, whether they’re using it themselves or commissioning someone else to use it,” says Anne Dawson, head of the School of Creative Industries, University of Gloucestershire. “It’s very important that we partner with leaders in the industry, like Pixotope, to make the technology more accessible and help our students achieve this understanding.”
Pixotope Pocket is initially available on iOS, with support for Android devices following soon, to students enrolled in courses at establishments partnered with the Pixotope Education Program.
For more information on the Pixotope Education Program, please visit https://www.pixotope.com/pixotope-education-program.
Get the TV Tech Newsletter
The professional video industry's #1 source for news, trends and product and tech information. Sign up below.
George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.