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Pixotope drives ‘virtual’ Asian Games in China

Pixotope VS/AR engines were deployed in the the opening and closing ceremonies of The 19th Asian Games and The 4th Asian Para Games by virtual technology provider, 4U Technology

Pixotope powered the opening and closing ceremonies of The 19th Asian Games and The 4th Asian Para Games held in Hangzhou, China, showcasing the potential of virtual technology, including digital robots and AR effects. Multiple Pixotope VS/AR engines were used by the event’s official virtual technology provider, 4U Technology, which spearheaded the content creation.

Pixotope collaborated closely with 4U’s designers and artists. The Pixotope team tailored the development of immersive visuals and effects to the events’ theme. Once the content reached its final iteration, 4U took charge of configuring the virtual environments and setting up the AR elements to align with the ceremonies’ requirements. Throughout rehearsals, Pixotope fine-tuned each presentation, utilising its interface to make any necessary adjustments in real-time. This meant that on event day the pre-planned sequences were precisely sequenced.

Huang Lei, vice president, 4U (Beijing) Technology, said: “During the opening ceremony, Pixotope used three primary camera positions, along with one backup position, for shooting. Under these conditions, it was essential for the staff and engineers to see the AR objects’ output and their integration with the real scenes during the preliminary setup and live broadcast. This was especially important during the testing phase.”

He added: “For example, when the 4U team created a virtual AR soccer ball, the design team could have been in a situation when they could only design the model without knowing how it will look from the perspective of the three camera positions. However, with Pixotope’s system, they could easily and effortlessly enable the production and testing staff to see the composite output, even when it was not in a live broadcasting environment.

“This rapid feedback allowed them to quickly and accurately position the virtual content in the right place. In short, Pixotope technology played a crucial role in AR, speeding up the production and testing processes and enhancing overall efficiency.”

Matthew Ma, general manager for North Asia, Pixotope, added: “One of the most remarkable aspects of the Pixotope solutions utilised in the Asian Games was the seamless implementation of augmented reality (AR) with physical environments, crafting a visually stunning spectacle that truly captivated audiences. Moreover, Pixotope’s real-time responsiveness empowered the production team to make on-the-fly adjustments during the ceremonies, ensuring that every moment unfolded with precision and finesse.”

Huang Lei also noted that virtual production technology has been widely used in the broadcast and television industry, but integrating the likes of AR into live broadcasting is still quite rare in China.

Huang Lei concluded: “Pixotope has also taken the lead in making studios more interactive. Traditional virtual studio products simply combine camera images with virtual content, which is unlikely to change. However, Pixotope has succeeded in creating excellent interactions between the people in the camera images and the virtual content. This innovation is essential for the industry, as it introduces new technologies to improve programme shooting. Pixotope’s user interface is also clear and straightforward, not requiring a complex understanding of blueprints like many other products. In short, the use of Pixotope solutions at the 19th Asian Games and The 4th Asian Para Games was a complete success.”

NAB 2024 (13 April – 17 April) show attendees can see Pixotope’s virtual production solutions in their Tech Den in North Hall meeting room N201LMR on level two. Pixotope partner, Unilumin, will also host a live end to end Pixotope XR workflow demonstration on booth C2316.