Fox Sports, NextVR Take a Bigger Swing at US Open

Taking another swing at live virtual reality production, Fox Sports (via its Fox Sports Lab unit) is teaming up with NextVR for a VR offering from this week’s U.S. Open Championship, set for June 16-19 at the Oakmont Country Club in Plum, Pa.

That VR coverage, sponsored by Lexus, will feature live streaming via special cameras stationed at holes 9, 17, and 18, with roving coverage between neighboring holes 10 and 11. The VR package will also include some on-demand fare, including players at the practice range each morning, narrated content of the course’s history, two-minute golf tips, and pre-produced features of each hole.

Fox Sports’ U.S. Open VR broadcast and associated VOD content will be available free through the NextVR portal. Samsung GearVR headset owners can access it via the NextVR app.  

This week’s VR coverage is the latest in a series from Fox Sports/FOX Sports Lab that also included specialized coverage of the Daytona 500, a Premier Boxing Champions title fight and the Big East basketball tournament. Fox Sports and NextVR also teamed on a smaller VR production during last year’s U.S. Open golf tournament.

The lastest work comes on the heels of a recently inked a five-year deal between Fox Sports and NextVR.

Fox Sports said it will offer more than 36 hours of live golf action during the tournament via Fox, FS1, and three distinct alternate live streams that add 110 hours of coverage on the Fox Sports Go app.

“At FOX Sports, we focus on helping partners align with the development and utility of technology, which naturally produces unique storytelling and content offerings,” said Neil Mulcahy, EVP, FOX Sports Ad Sales, Sports Management, in a statement. “We are connected across the company as we capitalize on innovative thinking, and our partners are at the center of that collaboration.”