Two-day international VR Film Festival to be held in Mumbai from 1 March

MUMBAI: Immersion, India’s First International VR Film Festival and Conference, will be held on 1st and 2nd March 2019 at Mumbai’s Nehru Centre. Immersion has been imagined, designed and produced by Immerge Knowledge Labs (a partnership between VR Storytellers and NYUCT Design Labs). Immerge Knowledge Labs believes there are very interesting applications in industry, content & brand experience, empathy and social impact.

Immersive technology is impacting industries and revolutionising them including and not limited to gaming, wearables, education, tourism, healthcare, social change, engineering, entertainment and retail.

Immersion 2019 will bring together industry leaders, futurists, creators, enterprise, start-ups, change agents and technology advocates across speaker forums, workshops, brand showcases and of course the film festival. The IP will also see very interesting legs during the course of the year going across design campuses and institutes.

The Immersion Thinkfest will feature both speakers from across industry categories and domain experts in VR and immersive technology, including Nathan Gaydhani (SystemActive Digital-Immersive Technology Business Consultant), Chaitanya Chunduri (Google-India Head AR/VR), Arnav Neel (Blippar- MD), John Kuruvilla (Kalpnik VR -Co Founder), Srivatsan Jayashankar (XR Labs-Co Founder-CEO) and Pankaj Raut from NXG Dimension – Ajnalens. There will be a host of other speakers and panellists. They will speak on topics such as Immersive Advertising, Immersive Experiential Gaming, Surgery in Augmented Reality, Cinematic VR – Future of Storytelling, Future of Education, VR and design thinking, Training and simulation in VR and many more.

A pulpit to inspire, evangelize and market immersive technology and its adoption, Immersion will help not only streamline business interaction for the VR eco-space, but also attract newer talent and younger minds. Immersion will see participation of VR/AR/MR experts, creators, innovators & investors who are complimenting the growth of its ecosystem.

Arpito Gope, Co-Founding Director of Immerge Knowledge Labs, says, “We are standing at the cusp of time when technology is challenging, enhancing and altering the very essence of living. Virtual Reality as a technology will push the boundaries of many fields of science and enterprise in ways unimaginable. Immerge Knowledge Labs and Immersion intends to be the platform where you get a ringside view of this change with creators, innovators and techno enthusiasts who are charting a new course.”

Eddie Avil, Co-Founding Director of Immerge Knowledge Labs has been a VR evangelist with his partner Ashley, having produced India’s first stereoscopic cinematic VR horror short film, Crackle. He commented, “Virtual reality will either take us into the matrix or make us realise we were in one all along. Immersion is an international forum and festival that brings all stakeholders in the immersive tech space together to ideate, share, explore and celebrate.”

The field of VR and immersive technology has seen plenty of action from reputed global brands like Google, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Samsung, EA, Imagine Labs.

In India, despite the relatively slower pace of adoption of augmented – and virtual- reality technologies, the nascent Indian AR/VR market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 76 per cent over the next five years, fuelled by demand from business and consumer sectors. The movement though nascent has stirred up in India and promises to be big and needs support and a platform like Immersion.

The impact of VR promises to be a domino as has been evidenced globally. It spans right from social change and empathy, media and entertainment, use by industry and enterprise for safe engineering, healthcare and mechanics. Be it the ground breaking project by PETA using VR films to make audiences empathize with a chicken and its life (I Chicken) or a whale (I Orca) or The Clouds of Sidra which helped boost the UN’s efforts to raise more money, awareness and empathy during the Syrian refugee crisis, immersive experiences pack a wallop.

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