Real Time Communications Featured Article

Summit Tech Makes VR Calls a Reality

February 24, 2016

Mobile World Congress (MWC) currently being held in Barcelona includes a number of hardware manufacturers and software developers at the congress showcasing new products and services that will likely change the way we use information and communications technologies (ICT).  One of these companies, Summit Tech, just launched its IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) 360 degree video calling with Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR headsets.

Since Facebook purchased Oculus Rift for $2 billion, the potential for it to become a consumer virtual reality (VR) offering has increased dramatically.

According to Digi-Capital, the augmented/virtual reality market is set to hit $150 billion, fully disrupting mobile by 2020.

Summit Tech is getting a jump in the market with its IMS virtual reality Rich Communication Services (RCS) calling solution. The company demonstrated live feeds from New York, Paris and Montreal at MWC by letting individuals experience the sights and sounds of these cities as well as communicating with anyone that happens to be there.

The technology also allows enhanced Mixed Reality communication services through motion controlled 3D interfaces for a deeper and more immersive telepresence.

The Summit Tech solution connects 360 degree calls through Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and Video over LTE (ViLTE), with support for industry standards and carrier IMS networks with IR.94 that are already in place. Because not everyone has VR headsets, calls can be streamed as an RCS Video Share session on Android, iOS and Windows phones without IMS features.

For demonstration purposes, the company used HD GoPro 360° and Ricoh Theta S cameras to make the 360° video calls, which are streamed directly. The streams can be transmitted to LTE mobile units or fixed-lines.

"We want to empower mobile operators to rapidly launch VR services and secure new revenue streams. Service providers can better leverage their IMS deployments and provide something that can truly excite consumers again, beyond just getting faster Internet or cheaper data packages. This is one of the many ways they can begin to amaze their subscribers. Moonshots should be for everyone!" said Alido Di Giovanni, President of Summit Tech.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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