American OTT Netflix, worldwide leader of the Subscription Video On Demand (SVOD) market, stated it is not interested in large investments in virtual reality (VR) or 360° immersive technology for not being compatible with binge-watching.
“You’re exhausted after 20 minutes. We are more focused on a lean-back, relaxing experience”, said Netflix CEO, Reed Hastings, in an interview with website VentureBeat.com. In the company’s earnings call for the first quarter of 2016, the manager said: “I don’t think it will have a direct effect on us in the next couple of years”.
“I can’t imagine putting on a VR headset while sitting on the couch with my wife for two hours and just disappearing”, said Netflix CCO, Ted Sarandos, adding also that “the problem with VR is that there’s not enough people on the platform to support the investment in that kind of content”.
Hastings however predicted that this technology “is going to be huge for the video game market, it will have a big impact there”. Netflix developed in 2015 content that can be accessed by mobile apps of RV headsets Google Cardboard, Oculus Rift (Facebook) and Samsung Gear VR, though they are 2D and not immersive.