AR/VR summit gears up for Auckland

EditorNews Make a Comment

The Magnify Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality Expo & Business Summit hits Sky City in Auckland this Sunday 7 May (the day for the public) and Monday 8 May (the industry day).

The business end of the summit is Monday, timed to coincide with Tech Week 2017., and the entire affair is sponsored by Air NZ, HP, and Sky City (the official partner for Tech Week).

“When we held the first summit on this topic a year ago, it seemed that AR/VR was about to become big,” says event creator Matt Coleman.

“In the past year, a groundswell of incredible technology has built up and is about to break.

“PokemonGo showed us just how potent the AR games marketplace is – who’d have thought we’d be catching creatures on the very streets we walk to work? Now it’s a reality and the sky is the limit,” he said.

Predicted to be a US$200 billion industry by 2020, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are set to impact every business and to bring science fiction-like situations into everyday life.

Facebook, Snapchat, Nintendo, Pokemon, Google and Alibaba are investing billions into this new platform – and the Auckland summit will look at the reasons why.

“Big business is positioning to get a piece of this exciting new platform,” Coleman says. “SNAP is the most anticipated IPO of the year with a valuation of US$29 billion, and Facebook investing $2 billion in VR through their purchase in Oculus VR – stratospheric sums of money being spent on the huge potential of AR and VR.”

Day 1
“The Public Day presents the latest gaming and hardware from HP and the opportunity to play games on the latest HTC VIVE rigs,” Coleman says. “The exhibition area showcases a range of products from New Zealand and international businesses and free panel sessions from experts for those who want to learn more about the industry and where it’s going.”

Day 2
“Then the big guns arrive for the summit, with an unprecedented line-up speakers from all over the world, covering topics including Hollywood, Tourism, Gaming, VR/AR in China, Finance and Investment, plus state-of- the-industry keynotes from top speakers.

“Leading the list of keynotes is Richard Taylor II DGA VES, founder and creative director at Eymerce in Los Angeles and a member of the Directors Guild of America – one of the top 10 talents in the world for developments in CGI.

“Eymerce is the next entertainment format, theatrical scale VR without a headset, where photo-real, three-dimensional imagery surrounds the viewer. Eymerce eliminates projection and creates reality with hi-resolution stereo LED. In science-fiction it’s called the Holodeck.

“With the Eymerce format, science fiction is becoming reality.”

“PokemonGo showed us just how potent the AR games marketplace is – who’d have thought we’d be catching creatures on the very streets we walk to work?”

Legend 3D founder
Taylor will be joined by entrepreneur Barry Sandrew, a board member of the Visual Effects Society from San Diego. He’s is founder of Legend 3D, and invented colourisation for film and 3D movie conversion for cinema.

Sandrew will discuss the future of VR and AR and explain how CES 2018 will likely define the AR ecosystem that will ultimately attract a huge revenue generating mass market.

Peter Busch, head of global development at Image Metrics Los Angeles is the man who brought facial recognition into the lives of millions of consumers worldwide. Facial recognition powers apps like Snapchat, a platform that has just become the most valuable IPO in history.

Moderator Ted Cohen, managing partner of TAG Strategic, is a tech futurist from Los Angeles and sought-after international speaker. He was dubbed ‘part ambassador and part evangelist’ during his tenure as senior vice president of digital development at EMI Music, where he was instrumental in crafting the licensing agreements upon which the iTunes Music Store and Rhapsody subscription services were built, along with Microsoft, Real Networks, Rhapsody, Virgin Mobile, Motorola, Nokia and Verizon.

Pat Hull, from Richmond, Virginia, transformed the trucking sector with geo-location technology.

The Kiwis
New Zealand-based speakers include: Air NZ chief digital officer Avi Golan, Geo AR Games founder Melanie Langlotz, who uses geospatial augmented reality to get kids off the couch and active outside.

PWC innovation partner Andy Symons will talk about AR/VR in the financial services sector; Sky City head of design & innovation Sam Brodie will presents his take on entertainment and tourism; Method’s Samantha Ramlu of Method talks about bringing stories to life; Westpac head of ventures Lewis Billinghurst will talk about innovation in traditional environments; Jonathan Duncan, talks about producing 360 degree interactivemultimedia; and NZ Fire Service digital manager Craig Pearce talks about their first 360 degree VR production.

Flight Centre managing director David Coombs will talk about being first retailer in New Zealand and Australia to put in VR headsets into retail locations so travellers can discover destinations before purchase.

“The Summit line-up is incredible and is essential participation for anyone wanting to hear how AR/VR is going to present opportunities and disrupt industries in the near future,” says Coleman.

“People in film and media, event creators, businesses involved in travel and tourism, design and architecture, transport and infrastructure planners, service industries, education, entertainment and more – all should make the journey to Magnify.

Ticket sales
Earlybird Summit tickets are now on sale at $299 per head (student rate $150) for access to both days.

Tickets are now available from Eventfinda. – or see the website for more information:

Entry to the public day costs just $25.

To Matt Coleman, Magnify World, 021 433 201,

Share this Post