September 2020 Newsletter

Welcome to the VR Industry Forum Newsletter

Keeping you updated about our activities! Here we highlight our latest work and focus on areas which are most critical.

A Message from the President 

2020 has been a challenging year; we see a transformation on how companies and consumers adapt to the changed way of working and interaction with each other. The advances in new VR/AR technologies are happening and together with the deployment of 5G networks (and their advanced 5G devices) it makes the perfect environment for deploying high quality immersive services. 

VRIF is already addressing the opportunities that 5G can bring to consumers; we are the first to propose an 8K VR profile and succeeded to influence Standardization Organizations (SDO) to consider this (more on this below). However, in order to fully exploit 5G capabilities we have to change the way we develop immersive applications, that is, we have to learn how to transition services from a device-centric to a network-centric approach: The “5G Cloud” track in VRIF has the goal to address this aspect within the Guidelines WG.

 I am glad to announce that we are hosting our first VRIF online event on the 8th October. We welcome everyone to use this opportunity to discuss and ask questions to our Industry experts. Please see below how to register.

VRIF Working Group Activity 

Highlights from the Guidelines WG

 VRIF is first to define 8K profiles for VR!

VRIF has released a new version of the VRIF Guidelines 2.2!
The main update is the inclusion of a new media distribution profile for viewport-independent delivery of 8K video content (that is delivering the entire 8K content in a single stream). This is the first time a VR360 interoperability point is defined for 8K-resolution distribution formats.

VRIF’s 8K viewport-independent profile inherits all properties of the OMAF viewport-independent profile, but supports HEVC Main 10 Level 6.1 decoding capability in order to process up to 8K@60fps content. 

The advantages of this profile are:

  • Matches the same resolution per eye as achieved by 4K viewport-dependent OMAF profile, while avoiding the complexities and costs associated with viewport-dependent processing and using off the shelf components such as DASH that has already a very wide industry support.
  • Is a pragmatic means to increase the adoption of high-quality liveVR experiences by leveraging 8K processing capabilities of new 5G mobile devices expected to be available in the market in 2020 and beyond.

Following the publication of Guidelines 2.2, VRIF liaised MPEG and 3GPP SA4 informing them about this new profile due to its relevance to (i) ISO/IEC 23090-2 on OMAF, and (ii) 3GPP TS 26.118 on VR Streaming Profiles.

For OMAF 2nd edition, MPEG agreed to define an unconstrained HEVC-based viewport independent profile, which detaches the codec requirement on the HEVC bitstream (currently mandating HEVC Main 10 Level 5.1 for 4K content) from the OMAF media profile definition and therefore allows defining an operation point for 8K (and resolutions beyond) by external guidelines such as those from VRIF.

3GPP SA4 decided to launch a new Rel-17 work item on “Operation Points for 8K VR 360 Video over 5G” (8K_VR_5G), which aims to introduce new VR 360 video operation points to 3GPP’s 5G Media Streaming (5GMS) supporting 8K resolution distribution formats. The corresponding work item description can be accessed here:

VRIF Member Testimonial – Nokia

Nokia has been a VRIF member since its early days and has been actively involved in the various VRIF working groups.  We see changes in the way multimedia is consumed now and into the future and believe that immersive experiences will play an important role.

VRIF has a critical part to play in promoting VR and in developing a VR ecosystem for industry and consumers.  Virtual and augmented reality pose technical challenges and place heavy demands on communication infrastructure and on multimedia-capable devices.  VRIF brings together companies from across the world and from different industry segments and fosters collaboration in standardized ways to solve these challenges, which would be difficult or impossible for any single company to do alone.

Nokia also values VRIF’s role as a bridge between standard-setting organizations and practical deployments.  Thus, after useful specifications such as OMAF (Omnidirectional MediA Format) have been developed by standard-setting organizations, guidelines can give a practical interpretation and direction to implementers which enables the standard to become useful via interoperable products and services.

As Nokia, the “Guidelines Working Group” is where we’ve focused most of our energy in VRIF, and we are looking forward to continued involvement as further immersive standards emerge.

If your company has an eye towards immersive experiences but is not a VRIF member, we’d encourage you to join even if you are not able to participate in every conference call or activity.  VRIF provides you an opportunity to influence the guidelines so that they are relevant for your own business, to network with others in the VR area, and to promote the overall development of the VR ecosystem.

Upcoming Events

VR Industry Forum is hosting its first Online Event

Date: Thursday, October 8, 2020
Time: 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM (CET)/8:00 AM – 9:30 AM (PDT)
Nowadays it is difficult to stay in contact with our community, the members and the interested parties. Events all over the world are cancelled. Therefore we’ve organized our first Virtual Reality Industry Forum Open Session to anyone who would like to know more about current and future work on VRIF.

It is a short, informative and interactive session to get quickly on track what is happening in the world of Virtual Reality and VRIF’s involvement.

The agenda will cover the following topics :

  • VRIF (re-)explained
  • What we have done
  • Collaboration with other organizations
  • Specific technology topics
  • VR360, OMAF 2.0 8k
  • VRSocial VR – How to reduce social distancing
  • How 5G helps to launch new immersive services
  • Volumetric distribution
  • Open Discussion

The session will be recorded and available afterwards on our website, but we invite you especially to join the live session to be able to participate in the discussion and be able to ask question to the specialists from VRIF.

 Registration is free and open to everyone. Do not miss the opportunity to connect with Industry experts in our field.

Please sign up via LinkedIn.

SMPTE 2020 Annual Technical Conference

We are glad to announce that VRIF will be speaking at the SMPTE 2020 Annual Technical Conference with the main theme on eSports “Game On.”

VRIF leadership will present the technical paper contribution: “Live VR end-to-end workflows: real-life deployments and advances in VR and network technology.”

This is an online event November 10 – 12, 2020.
You can view more details at:

If you’re not already a Member – Join Today!

Membership Information

The VRIF has four different focus areas targeting different stakeholders’ interest as well as securing VRIF’s long-term vision: VR360, Volumetric,  Social VR and 5G Cloud. For more information please see:

The VRIF is an organization built by the VR community and maintained by it. As a valuable member of this community, we ask you to consider joining the VRIF organization. Yearly membership already starts at $1000. More details can be found on our website:

  • Some key member benefits:
  • Contribute to the future of immersive video and drive the Guidelines by participating in our various Work Groups
  • Define VRIF priorities
  • Promote your leadership through speaking and other opportunities
  • Network with industry experts
  • Full access to MPEG standards and working documents
  • Participate in interoperability testing with early access to guidelines, content and other tools

Many industry leaders already see the importance and value of VRIF. Join today and add your voice. We welcome your participation and look forward to meeting soon.

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