Brighton, 4th October 2017 – Digital Catapult announces the opening of its new Immersive Lab in Brighton giving access to the hottest technologies in virtual, augmented and mixed reality, to support the UK’s burgeoning immersive community.
The Brighton lab is the second to open following Digital Catapult’s successful Immersive Lab launch in London earlier this year, which has already hosted over 80 events, meet-ups and demos and welcomed over 1,100 attendees through its doors. The immersive labs are part of Digital Catapult’s wider strategy to develop the best ecosystem for AR, VR and MR developers to create and experiment with the next generation of immersive content. The lab will be available to businesses of any size, alongside researchers and investors, to demonstrate, innovate, test and experience the latest immersive technology and content.
Digital Catapult has chosen Brighton as a home for its second Immersive Lab after conducting thorough analysis into VR, AR and MR clusters across the country. Brighton is one of the biggest immersive hubs due to its strong background in gaming, film and software and hardware development. With many companies already working in these fields, Brighton has the greatest potential in the region and is a clear choice for establishing the next Immersive lab, to further support the creative industries in the area.
“Brighton is uniquely positioned to take advantage of immersive technologies because it is home to many disruptive companies operating in the creative and digital sectors,” said Phil Jones, Lead at Digital Catapult in Brighton. “The opening of the Immersive Lab here is part of the wider strategy to bring these organisations together and encourage their collaboration to accelerate the immersive industry’s growth both regionally and nationally. Digital Catapult is committed to opening a number of Immersive Labs across the country, where anyone in the community can gain access to state-of-the-art equipment. Each Lab will build on the unique expertise of the local ecosystem, with the Brighton Lab drawing on Digital Catapult’s 5G test bed to help the startup and scaleup community explore how 5G networks can open-up new applications and services using virtual and augmented reality.”
Digital Catapult is developing a network of hubs nationwide to create the best environment for the immersive community to collaborate. In each lab, the gaming, film makers and software developers will have access to the latest equipment for testing, unlocking new types of content and business opportunities. The lab will be a place to showcase emerging content, meet potential investors, collaborate with researchers and trial new proof of concepts. The lab will be a meet-up point for companies of all sizes and individuals to collaborate and exchange ideas and expertise.
“The immersive industry is growing tremendously and is already valued at $5.4 billion globally for 2016. What’s even more important is the UK’s significant presence in the global immersive market, as currently being home to the largest number of up and coming VR companies in Europe,” comments Aurelian Simon, Head of Immersive at Digital Catapult. “The UK already has a rich heritage in sectors where immersive technologies are likely to have the largest and most immediate impact; the creative industries manufacturing and health. So, establishing immersive labs in key regions across the country like this one in Brighton will further benefit the development of the industry.”