Escape the cold with Inception VR’s virtual tour of Tel Aviv
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Film crew by the beach with Nokia's Ozo. Photo Credit: PR

Film crew by the beach with Nokia's Ozo. Photo Credit: PR

Feeling the freeze? This Israeli virtual reality content creation house wants to heat you up with a trip to the White City, all without leaving your couch

Tel Aviv-based Inception VR announced the launch of their latest partnership project on Monday, this time with Time Out Tel Aviv.

The new collaboration promises to take viewers on a variety of tours around the city, each with their own guide and theme. For every tour, Inception has listed options to explore the food, nightlife, and other essentials that make Tel Aviv one of the world’s great cities.

“The Tel Aviv Time Out VR City Guide is just about the coolest way to enjoy Tel Aviv’s best locations to get to know the city,” Inception Co-founder and CEO Benny Arbel said in his statement to the press. “Through what other medium could you actually jump into a map and receive a fully immersive introduction to the city? Our partnership with Time Out Tel Aviv is the perfect match to make this city guide truly on point and well informed.”

Along with the 360 images captured on video or still images, the users can access a CGI-rendered map, helping them navigate and learn about the city.

App Menu Snap Lighthouse. Image Credit: PR

“We are happy to present our users with another exciting way to explore Tel Aviv and help them make the most of the city,” said Yuval Sigler, Editor-In-Chief and Publisher of Time Out Tel Aviv in the release. “Discovering the trendiest venues and most inspiring people in the city has always been a crucial part of our mission statement – now we can do it in one of the most innovative ways, without missing an angle.”

Guide menu. Image Credit: PR

Launched this past year, Inception VR was co-founded by Arbel, CMO Dana Porter, CCO Effi Wizen, CTO Nitzan Shenar, and serial investor Gigi Levy-Weiss.

With their offices in Tel Aviv, this Israeli startup is developing one of the most important and mainly missing elements of the VR ecosystem: quality content. They have already teamed up with Time Out magazine for projects in London, as well as The Boiler Room among others to create well produced VR experiences.

Still relatively new on the scene, the company promises to create a full library of content, hoping to become the Netflix of VR, offering users with little interest in gaming a reason to consider picking up a proper headset.

The project is being sponsored by Toyota and the Intercontinental Hotel Group, the owners of one of Tel Aviv’s beautiful beachfront properties.

My take

What makes Inception’s approach stand out against much of the other content that has come out so far, is they are creating specifically for VR, not just trying to convert standard content to a new medium.

In telling stories or taking a viewer through a VR experience, it is easy to get lost due to the freedom to explore in 360°. Having brought in top level content talent like Ran Telem of Homeland fame, Arbel and his team have shown that they understand that the battle for winning over users to VR will be won and lost on developing a satisfying experience. Unlike gaming where the flashing lights and 360° sound can give this platform an edge over older systems, VR viewers will need something more.

Film crew by the beach with Nokia’s Ozo. Photo Credit: PR

From the looks of it as seen in this picture, the company is using top of the line equipment, including Nokia’s Ozo made for VR camera that was released a little over a year ago.

For as exciting as the progress in VR has been thus far, it still has a ways to go. The user experience is not quite there yet and until more folks have VR devices that can handle heavier content, like the Rift or Vive, it will probably hamper the rise of the VR tourism craze.

All that said, at the time of writing, Google tells me that it is 39℉ in both NYC and London. Facing those kinds of figures, even a virtual escape to warmer shores seems like a nice idea not to be missed.

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Gabriel Avner

About Gabriel Avner


Gabriel has an unhealthy obsession with new messaging apps, social media and pretty much anything coming out of Apple. An experienced security and conflict consultant, he has written for The Diplomatic Club, the Marine War College, and covers military affairs with TLV1 radio. He mostly enjoys reading articles wherever his ADD leads him to and training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. EEED 44D4 B8F4 24BE F77E 2DEA 0243 CBD1 3F7C F4B6

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