South Korea to build VR relations with China
Mon 21 Mar 2016
South Korea has announced its plans to strengthen cooperation with China to develop and market virtual reality (VR) projects.
According to a local report, the South Korean Ministry of Science, IT and Future Planning is holding a cross-national VR business event in Shanghai tomorrow which will bring together over 60 regional companies in the VR sector to discuss opportunities for partnership.
Firms expected to attend the event include South Korea’s Skonec Entertainment, producer of the VR shooting game Mortal Blitz – and Chinese mobile giant Tencent.
The report also highlighted South Korea’s plans to invest KRW 185 billion (approx. £111 million) over the next three years in promoting domestic VR products, and quoted Ministry official Kim Jong-sam: ‘The VR industry is drawing the world’s attention. It’s important to take the initiative in the global market through partnerships with China based on our development experience and technology.’
The global VR industry is estimated to reach $4 billion (approx. £2.8 billion) this year, and expected to surge up to $150 billion in 2020.
Many of the world’s top tech companies are beginning to latch onto the importance of VR as a promising sector. Earlier this month Amazon posted a job advert for a senior software development manager to lead a new virtual reality project.
The post read: ‘Entertainment is evolving rapidly. The future will not be limited to passive 2D experiences. The Virtual Reality team will explore and create the platform and interface for immersive storytelling. This will include an ingestion and playback platform for Virtual Reality experiences.’
A briefing in February also sparked rumours that Japanese gaming firm Nintendo is exploring virtual reality, confirming earlier comments made by designer Shigeru Miyamoto that the company was interested in the technology and had designed the 3DS console with VR in mind.
Miyamoto had however expressed concern over the introvert nature of the technology, having strived through other Nintendo systems to encourage ‘living room’ gaming – “to be fun not only for the person who’s playing, but also for the people who are watching.”