The acquisition will bring 360-degree video and VR content to Huffington Post’s global reporting.
RYOT, the Los Angeles based immersive media and VR content studio, has announced they’ve been acquired by AOL. RYOT will join The Huffington Post to not only enhance global coverage of the media publisher with VR and 360-degree video content, but also increase the content capabilities of AOL’s branded content studio.
Eventually RYOT will work with other publications within AOL’s portfolio like TechCrunch, Engadget, and Autoblog, contributing their expertise in immersive media. But for now, RYOT content is all being aggregated at its new home on the Huffington Post website.
“The Huffington Post is continuing to reimagine journalism as we move into the next generation of dynamic storytelling,” said Arianna Huffington, cofounder and editor in chief of the Huffington Post, in a press release. “From day one, we’ve been committed to using all the tools at our disposal to tell the most important stories of our time.”
RYOT was launched in 2012 with a simple mission to link every news story to an action. Throughout their journey, they searched for the next technology to bring viewers closer into the story, finally finding it with virtual reality.
We couldn’t be happier for our LA neighbors at RYOT, who have been passionate about combining technology and storytelling to let us experience some of the most important stories from around the world. One could say that RYOT and Huffington Post share similar editorial voice and content philosophies with its action-oriented, cause-driven journalism. And now with the global resources of Huffington Post, RYOT will be able to show us more of the stories that matter at greater scale, essentially creating the world’s largest 360-degree news network.
“The Huffington Post blazed the trail by empowering people to tell their own stories in their own voices,” said RYOT Co-Founder Bryn Mooser. “RYOT is born out of that same mission. Together, we’ll bring our immersive virtual reality storytelling to their global news network and we couldn’t be more excited. It’s a game changer.”
RYOT will no longer be covering breaking news, but instead focus on a handful of tentpole stories each month that take you deep inside the story using the latest immersive technology. In the past, we have covered a number of RYOT’s immersive stories like their work with Pencils of Promise to take you inside a rural Ghana classroom or raising awareness for dolphins by letting you swim with a pod off a small island.
This is a significant moment for us all working in VR and 360-degree video. Not only will the new partnership bring the technology and content to a more mainstream audience, but we can expect RYOT to arm citizens, activists and journalists with the next generation of tools, ushering in a new group of storytellers whose voices will not only be heard globally – but experienced.