No, the USMNT hasn’t made it to the World Cup 2018 so, whether you’re a player or fan, the closest you’re going to get to the FIFA World Cup in Russia is by watching it from the comfort of your own home. This year’s edition, however, will include the option for VR headset users to be right in the midst of the action with BBC’s World Cup 2018 VR trial screening over half of the tournament’s matches.
Minus some totally-not-legal hocus-pocus, the World Cup 2018 VR content will only be available to UK TV license-payers through BBC Sport’s official VR app. That means PSVR owners can get uncomfortably close to the stretched, sinewy thighs of Cristiano Ronaldo and ludicrous locks of Brazil’s David Luiz, if that’s your thing.
While not every World Cup match will be available on the app, the BBC hold the rights to 25 group games, as well as eight knockout matches, including the World Cup Final on July 15. The showpiece soccer/football (delete as appropriate) matches currently confirmed for the service include Portugal vs. Spain, Germany vs. Mexico and, uhh, Japan vs. Poland. Yay?
29 of those games will also be streamed through Ultra HD on a first come, first served basis limited to “tens of thousands of people.” Harry Kane in Ultra HD. Imagine that.
World Cup in VR promises to be the first step in a revolution for the broadcaster, with BBC’s chief technology and product officer Matthew Postgate saying, “We’re giving audiences yet another taste of the future.” No matter how badly your nation does (I’m looking at you, England), the World Cup 2018 promises to be historic for all the right reasons from a technological standpoint, and that’s something worth cheering about.