Emergent and the Rise of Consumerized VR

We’ve come a long way from the humble beginnings of VR as a niche application for the academic and early gaming communities. The virtual worlds we once considered science fiction, such as Ready Player One, The Matrix, Lawnmower Man and Snow Crash, are now very much a reality.

Whereas Oculus changed the game through a consumer-friendly headset, we’re now in an era where consumers can be the creators. This capability has brought us to our first VR investment in Emergent, a platform that will allow anyone to capture, share and experience immersive moments — using your smartphone. Emergent provides the ability to transcend physical limitations — connecting with the people you care about and reliving your memories like never before.

Emergent team: Peter Wilkins (co-founder), Isaac DeSouza, Chris Wheeler (co-founder)

Weddings, birthday parties, concerts, games, vacations or just a cool moment — these memories and experiences can now live beyond a flat screen. With Emergent, they soon can be relived using presence, the feeling that you are actually there. In the future, you’ll be able to share and witness personal events with lifelike intimacy and realism.

Co-founders Peter Wilkins and Chris Wheeler are no strangers to this industry, having worked together at DreamWorks Animation on Academy Award-nominated films like Kung Fu Panda and How To Train Your Dragon. From DreamWorks, they moved on to become visionary and technical co-founders of the first spherical video startup, Condition One, where they saw the potential of video for VR and created the first movie for Virtual Reality, Zero Point, which was featured at Sundance last January.

Their dream of allowing anyone to create their own VR content is what caused them to build Emergent. The future is now not only in the hands of the large corporations with elite VR technology, but now in the hands of most any consumer with a smartphone.

An example scene from Emergent’s VR experience

We are excited to embark on building a platform that will help carry the VR industry into the future, bringing Hollywood-like experiences, to the masses.

We’re proud to support entrepreneurs who are working hard to democratize the creation and virality of VR content, from gamers to grandma.

Kobie Fuller (@kobiefuller)