Scott Broock, one of Jaunt’s earliest members, has left the company to join as YouTube’s ‘Global VR Evangelist’.
Scott Broock, former Jaunt VP of Content, was one of the earliest members of the company, a virtual reality firm producing hardware, software, and content for virtual reality film. The company has had their own professional VR camera in development for several years now, with the latest iteration being the NEO. The camera isn’t for sale, with the company seeming to position itself more as a production partner than a VR camera manufacturer.
By all accounts, things seem to be going well for Jaunt. The company has quickly raised just over $100 million in investment capital, from big names like Disney and Google Ventures, making it one of the most well funded VR startups.
Broock, who has been with the company prior to its exit from stealth in 2014, has now left to join YouTube in the role of ‘Global VR Evangelist’, as he noted on Twitter. It isn’t clear exactly what the role will hold for Broock, but promoting YouTube’s VR video efforts will surely be part of the job description, and jives well with his previous experience at Jaunt.
YouTube has been making slow but steady progress into virtual reality, first supporting 360 degree video on their platform in March last year, eventually adding 3D support to 360 videos and making them viewable in VR through Google Cardboard in November.
As of now, YouTube’s VR support is essentially stuck on Android/Cardboard, as the iOS version of YouTube doesn’t yet support a split-screen VR view, and there’s no VR YouTube app available for Samsung’s Gear VR, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, or PlayStation VR. With Google having its own ambitions for VR, we may see some interesting platform politics come into play down the road regarding where users will be able to access VR content from YouTube.