Plex VR, the free PLEX viewer for VR devices that lets you stream locally stored media to your headset, just got an update that includes cross-platform social watching for all supported platforms, including Gear VR, Oculus Go, and Google Daydream headsets.

Called ‘Watch Together’, the social viewing mode in Plex VR lets you watch and share your own TV and movies with up to three other people. The mode includes voice chat and a dedicated avatar maker.

As one of the many features of ‘Plex Pass‘—a paid extra to the free app that lets you do things like record and play broadcast TV—you’ll need at least one person in the theater with it to run the social viewing room. Plex Pass can be had for a monthly fee of $5, a yearly fee of $40, or a lifetime fee of $120. A trial is also available to try for a seven days from the time you first sign into the app.

To add friends using any supported VR headset for ‘Watch Together’ sessions, simply add the user from your Plex friends list through the app itself, or if you’re on Gear VR or Oculus Go, add them via the Oculus friends list. To add friends to your Plex friends lists, navigate to the Invite Friend button in the Plex app, which lets you send an invitation by specifying the person’s Plex username or email address.

Another Plex Pass perk is the newly announced Virtual 5.1 Surround Sound, which uses spatialized audio for more TV and movie-watching immersion—a cherry on top if you already have Plex Pass for standard media consumption.

To get started, download both the PC-based media server and the VR app. Plex VR can be downloaded for free on Google Play (Daydream View), the Oculus Store for Gear VR, and the Oculus Store Go headsets.

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  • DoctorMemory

    I will be watching this to see if it becomes the “killer app” that VR has been looking for. If they can expand the viewers to 7 – 10 I see it being a way that friends who have had to move across country can keep in touch in a relaxing and entertaining way. I am excited to see what their metrics look like in the 4th quarter when the new college semester is in full swing.

  • drd7of14

    It’s nice that it’s offered on the mobile VR platforms,but it needs support for PSVR and PC VR as well. Maybe they’re not trying to compete with BigScreen, but seeing that people likely have a Plex Server on their PC already…playing it directly through the Plex VR app as the host and having users from any other platform sounds like it would be an obvious boon.

    • drd7of14

      Plus, PC could also for more room customization and “actual” VR, as opposed to a 360 screen (more or less). I know Plex VR has some minimal interaction, but a true 6DOF controller is necessary to expand beyond that.

      • JJ

        if you use OVRDrop you can watch movies anywhere even in side game, which yes i have done. Its a pretty interesting experience hanging out in skyrim while using your pc desktop lol.

        And yeah don’t expect anything from other systems or counsels to be brought to PSVR, Sony doesn’t play well with others

        • drd7of14

          Yeah I’m familiar with OVRDrop, though I’ve not personally used it myself. I find that is more like a VR OS extension, where you pop in whatever windows you want. Similar to windowed mode on a traditional non-VR OS in a way. Which is pretty cool, but it’s the social interaction that I’m more interested in.

          Expanding the capabilities of screens being accessible in a virtual sense within the world, rather than just a portal to another world that is otherwise non-interactive from within (if that makes any sense). I like the idea of someone picking up a remote in the VR world to raise the volume/change the channel etc, which in turn adjusts the video source accordingly.

          As far as PSVR goes, there are cross platform titles from PC to PSVR, so that’s not a problem. I don’t think the PSVR is capable of hosting, since it doesn’t have the accessibility of such server-side things, but it could definitely connect as a client to a PC.

          PS. – SONY doesn’t have problems with cross-platform connections between PC/Mobile, they just don’t play nice with competing video game consoles. Maybe if MS had been okay with cross platform play when FFXIV was launching on PC/PS3, things today would have been different.

          https://kotaku.com/final-fantasy-xiv-isnt-coming-to-xbox-because-of-a-sil-723669207

          But yeah, nowadays it’s quite different.

          https://www.gamespot.com/articles/final-fantasy-14-director-wants-switch-and-xbox-on/1100-6451129/

          It’s quite interesting how people forget…Regardless, not getting into that conversation any further.

          Plex has not commented on their plans to bring Plex VR to PSVR/PC thus far (though it’s obvious they’re looking into it). Bigscreen has commented on their plans to bring their app to mobile VR headsets and PlayStation VR.

          https://blog.bigscreenvr.com/a-look-back-at-bigscreens-2017-updates-2fa7dda2d706

          I’m not saying it’s a guarantee of course, but there is precedent for crossplay with PSVR and PC (most notably with Ubisoft’s games). It’s less a matter of policy, but more about capability. Will PSVR run BigScreen/Plex VR as a server, probably not. Regular Plex doesn’t run as a server from PS4 or Mobile. Mobile Plex VR doesn’t run it as a server either, only as a client (though you can always install the Plex Server apk on your mobile Android device).

          So…It’s really not unreasonable. It’s not like this is a game. It’s an app.

  • Joe Strout

    I don’t understand. Do all viewers need to have the same video file on their local computer? Or does content that just one user have, stream to the other users in the room?

    • drd7of14

      One user needs the file on their local computer as a server or on a cloud server (One Drive, Google Drive, etc), then anyone can access it as long as the server is up and running.

      There is limited support for the Cloud Server at this time with standard Plex, so not sure on it’s capabilities with Plex VR in particular. But the same premise applies, everyone does NOT need to have the file to watch it. It just needs to be on the host’s PC, their PC on, and their server running.

      • Joe Strout

        OK, thanks, that helps clear it up.

        • drd7of14

          No problem sir!

  • Run3

    But, Plex for Gear VR still has issues (and the slowest response rate of any damn support team I have ever encountered)

    • WyrdestGeek

      Yeah, also it doesn’t seem to be available for my (I guess ancient) Samsung Galaxy s6.

  • Chris Richardson

    I just tried this. I have a lifetime membership and I was not able to host a room for a friend. She signed into Plex, got my invite, but when Plex loaded for her, she was in her own room. When she tried clicking the join group button, she got a message saying a Plex Pass was needed to use that feature. Either something is broken on the Oculus Go version, or this app doesn’t work as suggested.