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Netflix Clicks On Virtual Reality Capability

Whether it’s while watching actress Taylor Schilling play Piper Chapman as she navigates Litchfield Penitentiary in Orange is the New Black or Kyle Chandler become John Rayburn in his attempt to keep the family’s dark secrets quiet within his Floridian paradise in Bloodline, Netflix has a better plan to enhance its content. This time, however, it’s with a 360-degree view, specifically through virtual reality (VR).

The Los Gatos, Calif.–based company just unveiled its new app, Netflix VR, that works with Google’s Daydream View VR headset. The video-streaming company’s app is ready to be downloaded to Android devices via the Google Play online store and, for now, is only capable to attach to and work with Google’s VR headset. Experts say that as other VR headset versions roll out, the app will likely work with them, too.

Once into the app, the interface is similar to what Netflix fans are used to. However, the big addition is on the welcome screen where viewers are transported to “their” living room, which has a cabin look, complete with a Netflix red sofa, bay windows, some softly lit lamps, a black coffee table and a flat paneled TV screen showing content options. There, they can interact in the space before deciding which content to watch.

Customers have the option to try out the service for a free 30-day trial before adjusting their subscription for the added capabilities.

If some of this news sounds vaguely familiar, it’s likely because Netflix unveiled a similar VR app for the Samsung Gear VR headset last fall. Hulu BR rolled out recently and is only available for Samsung Gear users.

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