SK Telecom recently expanded and relocated its mixed reality capture facility, Jump Studio, to corporate headquarters at SKT-Tower as the telecom operator unveiled plans to take its 5G content business at full-scale.
Opened six-month ago last April, Jump Studio – touted to be the first in Asia – delivers advanced immersive media technologies using Microsoft’s volumetric video capture technology to create holographic videos by shooting a person’s dynamic movement through 106 cameras.
By combining these with SKT’s ‘T Real Platform,’ which is built with spatial recognition and rendering technologies, the result is highly immersive mixed reality content that can be played on most devices including Android/iOS smartphones, head mounted displays and AR glasses.
Armed with Jump Studio, SKT plans to promote its 5G content business in two different directions at the same time. It will focus on producing truly immersive contents at reasonable costs for the entertainment, advertising, sports and education companies, while also actively distributing content through Jump AR and Jump VR apps in Korea and international markets.
“We will make utmost efforts to shape Jump Studio into the leading content creator hub in Asia,” said Ryu Young-sang, president of mobile network operations division at SK Telecom. “We will introduce a wide variety of realistic media contents fit for the age of non-face-to-face communications brought by the Covid-19 pandemic.”
The core competitiveness of Jump Studio lies in the fact that it can significantly reduce both time and cost needed for content production. The production process, which used to take months, can now be completed within just one to two weeks and at less than half the cost.
Indeed, the latest video performance of South Korean choreographer Lia Kim, which was released this month, was completed within a week at Jump Studio. Lia Kim’s highly immersive video is realised through advanced mixed reality technologies, where she dances with multiple 3D holograms of herself and appears as gigantic holograms.
Creating innovative visual contents
As AR and VR services are emerging as one of the most attractive 5G services, SKT will also focus on distributing high-quality contents in both Korean and overseas markets by dramatically increasing the content libraries of Jump AR and Jump VR apps.
The company is currently in close talks with a number of major mobile carriers and media companies in Europe, North America and Asia for collaboration in Jump AR and Jump VR services as well as joint investment or production of AR and VR contents.
It already signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with PCCW Group (Hong Kong Telecom, PCCW Media) to launch Jump AR and Jump VR services in Hong Kong and Macau.
Under the MOU, the two companies will cooperate in the marketing of Jump AR and Jump VR; jointly produce and invest in 5G contents; and develop new AR and VR business opportunities.
PCCW will hold exclusive marketing rights for Jump AR and Jump VR services in Hong Kong and Macau, and provide promotional benefits for 5G subscribers along with Chinese language support.
Meanwhile with the growing importance of non-face-to-face services driven by the Covid-19 pandemic, an increasing number of companies are seeking new and differentiated ways to enhance their customer experience.
SKT has been actively leveraging Jump Studio to create innovative visual contents that meet the needs of diverse companies.
For instance, in May 2020, SKT and SM Entertainment successfully presented a 3D mixed reality performance at Super Junior's online-only paid concert titled “Beyond Live.” During the show, a 12-meter-high hologram of Choi Si-won, a member of the boy band, popped out from the back of the stage to impress the 123,000 global audience.
Steve Sullivan, general manager of the Microsoft Mixed Reality Capture Studios, said, “We're proud to have Jump Studio as our licensed partner in Korea. In a short time, they've already delivered several amazing high-quality volumetric experiences, leveraging the power of 5G to create innovative new entertainment experiences across K-pop, dance, movies, music, and sports. We are looking forward to partnering with you in the years ahead.”