You can now watch MLB games in virtual reality.
Starting June 6, MLB will launch a VR livestream of one out-of-market game each Tuesday in June. It’s part of a new 3-year deal with Intel, which is helping power the experience via its Intel True VR app and 4K-resolution camera pods set up at various stadiums around the league.
The feed, which is free to access and available on Samsung Gear VR headsets, will let viewers select from five camera angles — home plate, first base, third base, center field, and a special pitcher-batter view — that offer 360-degree views of the live action. Or, they can choose a “sit back” mode that is a fully-produced VR broadcast experience.
There are also real-time statistics and exclusive in-app commentary available on the stream. After the game, highlights and on-demand replays of each game will be made available in VR.
Here are the four games:
- Cleveland Indians vs. Colorado Rockies on June 6 at 5:40 p.m. PT / 8:40 p.m. ET
- Kansas City Royals vs. San Francisco Giants on June 13 at 7:15 p.m. PT / 10:15 p.m. ET
- Detroit Tigers vs. Seattle Mariners on June 20 at 7:10 p.m. PT / 10:10 p.m. ET
- St. Louis Cardinals vs. Arizona Diamondbacks on June 27 at 6:40 p.m. PT / 9:40 p.m. ET
You can download the Intel True VR app here via the Oculus store.
David Aufhauser, managing director of strategy and product for Intel Sports Group, told GeekWire that “there will be opportunities for advertisers and sponsorships to be apart of this,” but didn’t offer more details.
This is separate from the VR-ish offering that is going live on MLB’s At-Bat app today. Those feeds, streamed for each game, don’t provide a 360-degree view but instead a two-dimensional format with the normal broadcast view. It’s available for Google’s Daydream View headset.
Intel, which partnered with MLB last year during the All-Star Game, continues to push forward in the sports industry. In March, Intel livestreamed the NCAA men’s basketball tournament in virtual reality via a partnership with the NCAA and Turner. It also aired a virtual reality feed from the Players’ Championship last month.
This past fall, the company established its Intel Sports Group, right around the time it acquired virtual reality startup Voke. Much of the Intel True VR experience is powered by technology that Voke helped develop — you can hear from Voke co-founder Dr. Uma Jayaram at our upcoming GeekWire Sports Tech Summit.
Intel continues to build products and services with wearable computing, connected devices, and more that have application in the sports industry.
MLB announced a live streaming deal with Facebook last month.