The virtual reality “watch party” for the first Trump-Clinton debate was a bust. It was presented by VR hangout app Altspace and NBC News, and just amounted to glorified Second Life, basically. Avatars of people from around the world watching a flat video stream. Not a great experience.
I captured the video above while watching some of the debate through the app. I was using an Oculus Rift headset, though Gear VR and Vive were also both supported. As you’ll see, presenting the debate in VR didn’t add anything useful.
Last year’s Democratic Primary Debate in VR was way better, because they put cameras on stage for that one and let users view the debate from various angles. And even that wasn’t that great, given the lack of viewer control of the experience.
Maybe next time?