A VR Cinema is Open in Amsterdam

The Virtual Reality Cinema is an entertainment concept developed by &Samhoud Media (Amsterdam, The Netherlands), a creative agency and online publisher that specializes in virtual and augmented reality. Located in Amsterdam, The VR Cinema is billed as a place where “everybody can get acquainted with virtual reality and experience what it is like to see VR movies that are unfolding around you in 360 degrees.”

The VR Cinema is an outgrowth of what the company describes as Europe’s first virtual reality pop-up cinema. This traveling VR experience had previously toured through several big cities in The Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland.

The cinema is composed of several hardware components.

The first and key part is the headset. This consists of a Samsung Galaxy S6 smartphone mounted in a Samsung Gear VR headset. The Gear VR headset is described as light weight and convenient in that is wireless without cords or wires. Furthermore, the headset is reported as easy to put on and take off with straps provided to adjust the fit to the size of the individual user. The Gear VR includes a knob that can be used to adjust focus. This last feature allows comfortable use of the headset for people that wear glasses.

The experience provided by many virtual reality videos is enhanced by the inclusion of a sound track that follows the user’s head movements. In the case of the VR Cinema, high quality sound is provided by Skullcandy Crusher headphones. These are not only light weight, adjustable and comfortable but also serve to shut out background noise.

In the VR cinema, conventional fixed chairs have been replaced by custom made, rotatable seats. This allows the viewer physically rotate by 360 degrees so as to freely look around and see what is happening on all sides as well as above and below.

I could not find any comment on-line that describes how the hardware is cleaned between uses.

A video created to introduce the VR Cinema can be found at the end of this article.

In a visit to The VR Cinema, viewers will typically experience a virtual reality video that lasts about 30 minutes. Virtual reality videos are currently available with several different themes. These titles and categories include Night Fall, scary, documentary, For kids and journey. Tickets to the VR Cinema cost 12.5 euros. The VR Cinema can hold 50 people at a time. The theater is closed on Mondays but open the afternoon and evening of all other days.

Assuming that the VR Cinema in Amsterdam is a success, &Samhoud Media has stated the intention of opening VR Cinemas in cities such as Madrid, Berlin, Paris and London. – Arthur Berman