Intel, Twitter, and The PGA of America have partnered up to broadcast 360-degree videos from the Players Challenge PGA Tour on May 11.
The videos will be captured via Intel True VR technology and broadcast via Twitter’s social network and Periscope live-streaming platform. You’ll also be able to watch the 360-degree content via the PGA Tour VR app for Samsung’s Gear VR. The PGA Tour said in a press release that it will offer “three concurrent VR camera positions” during the event: “one camera at the 17th tee, one on the walkway from the tee box to the green, and one mounted in the water next to the island green.” This is supposed to bring golf fans “closer to the action than ever before” and show off live VR.
This partnership is part of a continued push to embrace VR in mainstream media. Platforms like Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Vimeo have all added 360-degree video support over the last few years, and outlets such as The New York Times and CNN have committed to making more VR content. Sports could help make VR and 360-degree videos even more common: The PGA Tour said in its press release that Twitter’s distribution of the tournament’s early round coverage has “averaged almost half a million unique viewers each day, more than 70% of which are under 35 years old.”
Partnerships like this could reach a more diverse audience than, say, game demos in Microsoft Stores or VR game tournaments. Events like that are important–much of VR’s current offerings are made to appeal to a relatively young audience–but broader adoption requires something a little more mainstream. That “something” could be golf tournaments and other sporting events. Allowing people to experience 360-degree videos, which are like the gateway drug to real VR, with nothing more than a smartphone and a Twitter account will also reduce the technology’s many barriers to entry.
You’ll be able to catch these videos on Twitter and Periscope by following @PGATOUR on both services. You can also find the PGA Tour VR app on the Oculus website. The festivities will begin on the 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass on May 11.