Underliningits push to produce more live video content, AOL Inc. plans to build a ground floor studio that will openin downtown New York City this fall.
The company,which was recently acquiredby Verizon Communications Inc.,said that the debut of the public-facing studio facility will bolster interviewseries AOL BUILD specifically.
Currently,AOL BUILD, which will relocate from company headquarters at 770 Broadway in Manhattandown the street to 692 Broadway, produces at least four hours of live programmingdaily, with 75 live events per month. AOL BUILD has hosted over 800 episodes todate with over 2,000 guests from big names in entertainment, tech, sports, fashionand business. Among the notables: Elton John, Julianne Moore, Nicholas Sparks, MarioBatali and Lindsey Vonn.
The newstudio, stretching beyond 13,400 square feet, will be equipped with state-of-theart technology, designed to shoot in 360-degrees. Last month, AOL announced thatit had agreed to purchaseRYOT Corp., a Los Angeles-based company that produces 360-degree and virtual-realitydocumentaries and branded video content.
Uponthe deal's completion, RYOT will produce films, linear video, 360-degree and VRcontent for online news aggregator The Huffington Post. It is also expected to helpPartner Studio by AOL in improving its content capabilities. AOL eventually plansto grant Autoblog, BUILD, Engadget, MAKERS and TechCrunch access to RYOT's VR capabilities.
Whenthe studio facility opens this fall, the event will play before a live audience,while users can stream it at AOL.com/BUILD.
Thoseattending the company's newfront presentation for advertisers, where it made thestudio announcement, got a sense for what it will look like, as Yorgos Lanthimos,the director of "The Lobster," and stars Colin Farrell and Ariane Labed,discussed the film on a set aiming to replicate the AOL BUILD studio. The film wonthe Jury Prize at last year's Cannes Film Festival.
AOL Chairmanand CEO Tim Armstrong said at the event that the company already streams 100 millionhours of live video per day through its various owned-and-distributed channels.Most of AOL's audience — 70% — enters from mobile devices.
Armstrongsaid the company will roll out 20 new original video series across its portfolio.