Intel acquires Voke VR to build out immersive sports business

The end goal for Intel is to have the ability to broadcast live events in VR.

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Voke's TrueVR platform.

Intel is buying virtual reality startup Voke VR in an effort to build out a portfolio of services for its new immersive sports business. The end goal for Intel is to have the ability to broadcast live events in VR.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it includes Voke's technology and platforms, talent, and clientele.

Founded in 2004 and headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., Voke is a strong player in the virtual reality segment. The company was previously backed by Intel and the Sacramento Kings, the latter of which used the investment to offer VR live streams of its NBA games.

Voke's platform includes a proprietary paired lens and stereoscopic capture system that make its VR streams look more realistic in terms of depth and proportion. Voke's videos can be viewed on multiple platforms including PCs, tablets, smartphones, and VR headsets.

According to Intel, Voke's platform was designed for simple integration into existing broadcaster and league channels -- something the chipmaker highlighted as one of the key factors in buying the startup.

"Together, we can innovate and scale our new immersive sports business faster to bring fans the most personalized, fully immersive VR experience ever imagined and change the way networks, sports leagues and teams engage with their audiences," said James Carwana, GM of Intel Sports Group.

Intel's new sports division also includes the freeD technology team, which came to Intel after the company acquired Replay Technologies in March. Both Replay and Voke help round out Intel's portfolio of VR technology, as the chip giant works to expand beyond its legacy business.

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