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The channel technology event of the year is back! VIRTUAL REALITY ISSUE #174

19th April 2018 - Silverstone Circuit

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March 2018

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TheEditor 7\[\WVYZO\[\W IT MIGHT BE something of a dramatic statement, but for me 2018 is something of a ‘put up or shut up’ year in tech. So many exciting categories – the smart home, wearables and virtual reality to name just three – have emerged over the past few years, and we’re reaching a point where they all need to prove whether they deserve a seat at the table. The latter of the three – VR, in addition to augmented reality and mixed reality – serves as the topic of this month’s magazine. VR is perhaps the consumer technology that had the most initial ‘wow’ factor, but there have long been questions surrounding what happens next. How can it be used to make money, or will it fade away as so many passing fads have done in the past? But while this issue is focused on the fantastical sci-fi technologies behind virtual reality, our analysis story has made me reflect on the very real situation of how we do business, and the effects that it can have on the people on the front-lines. It’s easy to forget, when dealing with astronomical numbers on a daily basis, that for every big-money deal being struck there are potentially hundreds of employees behind it. And these are people whose livelihoods are dependent on the decisions made by a select handful of people at the very top of a company. Of course, this is how business has always been done and how it will continue to be, but this past month’s events in the Channel have given me particular pause to reflect on the human cost of doing business.

“How can VR be used to make money, or will it fade away as so many passing fads have done in the past?�

Jonathan Easton, Editor















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Contents March 2018 Laptop market figures New realities

Who is making the most of resurgent notebook sales

Gimmicks out

How VR can shake off its 'novelty' tagline and start making money

AR and VR are revolutionising mobility in the workplace

Synology interview

Newly-appointed MD Nicole Lin lays out her plans for the future





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Global notebook market is booming



HE GLOBAL notebook market is on the up, with 164.7 million units shipped in 2017. That is a 2.1 per cent year-on-year increase, massively surpassing all expectations and forecasts in the buildup to TrendForce’s market report. While HP remains the market leader with more than 24 per cent of the market share, Apple has shown its intent to move upwards in the market. Surpassing ASUS for the first time, Apple captured a 9.6 per cent market share. In the second quarter of 2017, the new MacBook Pro helped Apple expand shipments by 18 per cent for the whole year, the highest growth rate among all the notebook brands. As a result, the market share of Apple reached 9.6 per cent, 1.3


percentage points up from 2016. This meant that Apple surpassed ASUS and rank fourth.“The global notebook market has benefited from biddings for notebook contracts in North America and regional economic recovery,” says Kou-Han Tseng. For 2018, the market share of the top six brands is expected to rise to 89.1 per cent, squeezing the room for other brands to develop. On the other hand, Xiaomi and Huawei recorded growth in Chinese market, but the results of their overseas deployment are not clear yet. HP has demonstrated its ambition since the second quarter and recorded new highs of shipments in 2H17. Its annual shipments hit a new milestone of 40 million units, a substantial increase of 10.5 per cent over 2016. With a market share of 24.3 per cent, HP has retained first place in the shipment ranking. Things were not so rosy at Lenovo, where shipments saw a year-on-year drop of 4.9 per cent. It enhanced its sales in Asia and Europe, but still cannot make up the shipment decrease in 1H17. This has an impact on the brand’s performance, making its market share down to 20.2 per cent, ranking the second. With mobility being increasingly key for consumers and resellers in 2018, it is likely that this revival of fortunes for the notebook will continue for a while yet.



Samsung rocked by another scandal PCR examines what has led to Chairman Lee Kun-hee becoming a suspect in a $7.5 million tax evasion case


AMSUNG IS facing yet another scandal after chairman Lee Kun-hee was named as a suspect in a $7.5 million tax evasion case in South Korea. The investigation into Kun-hee relates back to the late payment of 130 billion won in tax in 2011, though only 8.2 billion of that sum falls within the statute of limitations, according to police. Kun-hee is yet to be questioned due to his ‘physical condition’ according to a police spokesperson. Following a heart attack in 2014 Kun-hee has remained hospitalized in Seoul’s Samsung Medical Centre and has difficulty communicating with having shown little sign of recovery. “Samsung chairman Lee Kun-hee and a Samsung executive managed funds in 260 bank accounts under names of 72 executives, suspected of evading taxes worth 8.2 billion won,” Korean National Police Agency said in a statement. It is the latest in a string of scandals that have hit the Samsung family over the last few years. The chairman’s son Jay Y Lee was released from prison earlier this week after an appeals court halved his sentence for bribery and corruption to two and a half years and then suspended in for four years. Jay Y Lee had been acting as the head of the group until his arrest, following his father’s heart attack. Lee was convicted of bribing former president Park Geun-hye to strengthen his control over Samsung. The


conviction is part of a wider corruption investigation into Park, who herself faces conviction before the end of the year. Lee was found guilty of approving donations to Park’s friend, Choi Soon-sil, in return for securing government support for the contentious merger of two Samsung affiliates that would strengthen his control over the group. Since his arrest in February, Lee has insisted the payments were made to Samsung without his knowledge, and with no expectation of favours from the Park administration. In total, Lee was found guilty of sanctioning £30 million in bribes to four entities controlled by Choi. Following Jay Y Lee’s arrest, Samsung CEO CEO Kwon Oh-hyun stood down from his post when all expected him to assume control at the head of the company. Citing a ‘crisis’ within the tech company, Oh-hyun’s resignation surprised many. Yet despite the scandals in the boardroom, Samsung’s profits have continued to soar.

“The latest in a string of scandals to hit the family over the last few years.” ^^^WJYVUSPULIPa

“There are no Ivory Towers at Tenda. Even our CEO gets involved with our partners”





1HTPL7S\TYPKNL ;LUKHÂťZJVTTLYJPHSKPYLJ[VYPZH*OHUULSZ[HS^HY[OH]PUNZL[\WZL]LYHS JVTWHUPLZV]LYH`LHYJHYLLYI\[OLHSZVWHJRZHW\UJOPU[OL ZSPNO[S`TVYLIY\[HS^VYSKVM44( What does an average day look like for you? An average dayâ&#x20AC;Ś what is that? Tenda is in an exciting and dynamic growth period right now and so my days are extremely varied as we engage with a variety of existing and new partners. We are also in the process of hiring new staff and setting up our UK office. I am in the process of organising various events for 2018, while also managing new product releases and further bolstering our marketing and PR activities. What are the key aspects of your role? I work very closely with the UK managing director and sales director to constantly assess and develop our UK strategy and operations. This involves developing our complete â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;go-to marketâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; strategy, recruitment, team management, partner engagement and operation/ logistics control. I love getting out to meet resellers all over the country, and even recently got involved (alongside one of our product managers) in assisting a UK reseller in an install involving our Nova MW6 smart whole home Mesh Wi-Fi system into a large Hyde Park mansion. Not part of my official job description, but I thoroughly enjoyed getting out to help one of our customers, which resulted in an extremely happy reseller and end user. There are no Ivory Towers at Tenda. Even our CEO has been over to the UK to get involved directly with our Channel partners. What was the best piece of advice that anyone has ever given you for your career? â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Treat others as you would like to be treated yourself â&#x20AC;&#x2122;. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a mantra that has served me well in 20 years of my career in this industry (as well as in my personal life). I still believe that ultimately people do business based on


10-11 PCR174 LifeInTheChannel_Jamie Plumridge_v3.indd 2

trust, and respect. Of course, the business offer has to be sufficiently strong, but as long as that is the case, people want to do business with someone that they trust in. Having moved about the Channel, what are your best and worst memories from Channel life? I have actually spent about 15 years of my 20 years in this industry running my own businesses, which means I have had the pleasure of working with a real variety of companies and people in this industry. Some of my best memories are of the various Channel events through the years such as the PCR Awards where I get to catch up with all of my Channel colleagues in one place. My worst memories of Channel life are those times when I have been let down by people/ companies that havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t shared the same mantra as I do of â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;treating others as you would want to be treatedâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;. Thankfully however, those moments have been very few and far between. Do you have any hobbies outside of work?  I have been an avid footballer all my life and still play regularly. Although, the realisation that I am no longer the quick, young whippersnapper that I used to be can be a stark reality check at times, especially as the new generation breeze past me! I also play a bit of golf (badly), play bass guitar in a band (pretty well) and love training in mixed martial arts. I did an MMA cage fight for charity in front of over 1,000 people in August. It took me way outside of my comfort zone, and most importantly raised over ÂŁ5,000 for Cancer Research. How can people best get in touch with you?  You can contact me at any time via linkedIn, or email


04/03/2018 20:38


Countdown to the PCR Awards D

epending on when you’re reading this we will either be mere days away from – or nursing hangovers as a result of – the PCR Awards 2018. Assuming you’re in the former camp, we thought we’d cast an eye back to last year to get us all terribly excited for what’s to come. Presented by the hilarious comic Phil Wang and sponsored by Headline Partner Ci Distribution, Reseller Category Partner Northamber, Distribution Category Partner AOC International, After Party Host ASUS, Event Partner Hannspree UK, Drinks Reception Partner Intel and (Photobooth Partner CMS Distribution), the Awards will be taking place at The Brewery in Central London on Wednesday 7th March 2018. Tickets are available now – and are in short supply – from




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Is augmented reality for real? (9WYLZLU[Z\UPX\LVWWVY[\UP[PLZMVYI\ZPULZZLZI\[[OL`ULLK[V RUV^OV^[VTHRL[OLTVZ[VM[OL[LJOUVSVN` present amongst competing products has never been as AUGMENTED REALITY is on everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s mind today. As easy or as impactful as it is with AR.â&#x20AC;? Mugatu from Zoolander might say, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;that AR, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just so hot It would seem many companies are still struggling to right now!â&#x20AC;&#x2122; But with such new technology many people, experts and newbies alike, are asking whether AR is for real develop a useful and profitable application for AR within their product offering and marketing. At CES this year, AR or whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the latest shiny gimmick destined to fade was at the forefront for several companies, but not as away. The long term is anyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s guess, after all, markets are widespread as mightâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve be expected at the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s leading about as predictable as raising teenagers â&#x20AC;&#x201C; especially with tech show. In the consumer electronics accessories market, new technology. But in the short term, at least for us at it was no different. Industry giants failed to produce STM Goods, AR is proving to be a game changer.  an effective or even functional AR experience. We have long been known for creating quality â&#x20AC;&#x153;Many But in the middle of a hall full of much laptop bags, backpacks and tablet cases on the larger companies, the rapidly growing STM market. So, what is a manufacturer of bags companies are Goods enjoyed a noticeably crowded booth and fitted cases doing leading the market still struggling to from attendees clamouring to experience with AR? The answer to this question is develop a useful the AR experience presented.  As actually the answer to the AR question captivated audiences craned to see itself: itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s all about innovation. Just as STM and profitable backpacks materialise before their eyes, in started two decades ago by pioneering the application vibrant 3D, fully interactive with clickable laptop-dedicated backpack, we have again for ARâ&#x20AC;? prompts, and even with x-ray vision. pioneered the use of AR as a means of For STM, AR stole the show, and for our retail enhancing and improving product interaction partners it has sparked their imagination. Visions of for customers.  Our CEO, Ethan Nyholm, has celebrated the opportunity consumers interacting with products in-store, in ways the larger online titans like Amazon canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t currently provide, is that AR presents to companies competing to communicate posing an edge for retailers that just didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t exist before. effectively with interested consumers, saying â&#x20AC;&#x153;nothing has So will AR survive? Will it manage to emerge as a ever given a customer the ability to explore our bags and disruptive technology? Time will only tell. But for those cases quite like AR. Without assistance from retail staff, the companies with the vision to use it to the consumerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s customer can explore our products in ways theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve never benefit as STM Goods is doing, AR is a present reality that been able to do before. For a product as ubiquitous as is already reshaping the future. backpacks, demonstrating the true difference our products





VR – where to now? ,]LY`VULNV[]LY`L_JP[LKHIV\[=9HJV\WSLVM`LHYZHNVI\[YPNO[UV^MVY TVZ[P[»ZZ[PSSH^HP[PUNNHTL will transform the workplaces of the future and don’t I HAVE BEEN AROUND technology long enough to forget having fun too, VR really does provide a form of remember when the first virtual reality wave came around. escapism like no other. Back in the ‘90s VR headsets were released that promised I keep seeing headlines floating the idea that somehow so much, an escapism like no other with a chance to explore brand new worlds. I remember seeing the Atari VR VR is stalling, that the technology is not moving fast enough and that it might just fizzle out into oblivion previewed in a magazine, I was just so excited! never to be seen again. From my perspective we are only As you probably know once released these pieces of just at the beginning of a tidal wave of new products and hardware offered very little in the form of escapism, revolutionary applications that will affect many of our unless staring at a handful of blinking pixels was your lives, both from a business and leisure point of idea of fun, Tron this was not, and Atari VR? view. And it’s not just me that thinks this way. Well, except for a few prototypes, it never Big-name brands link Google, Oculus, even saw the grim light of day. “We are only Unity, Unreal Engine and many more are In short they all failed, but not all was lost, cut to 2014 and the second wave hit just at the beginning investing in VR as they are confident that we are indeed just at the start. a homerun. Oculus and HTC brought of a tidal wave of Many retailers regularly ask me how true VR experiences to everyday users products and they can make money from this emerging and I loved every second of it (and still applications” technology. However, the reality is that for do). From exploring the scale of our own most it’s a waiting game at the moment. If solar system and beyond to running from you are just looking for a quick profit VR is zombies in Arizona Sunshine, I can safely say probably not for you, at least not right now in its VR was worth the wait. current form and at its current price point. However if Since then, Utopia has helped our clients find new you have a passion for technology, I say spend your time ways of pushing the boundaries of VR, our computers understanding, sharing and exploring. The future is just have powered VR experiences as far away as Dubai. around the next corner and who knows you could Closer to home, we have helped hundreds of school become the next specialist who is be able to take children and college students see how VR could transform their classrooms by taking them on journeys to advantage of this amazing technology that is only going to get better and keep on expanding into a range of visit elephants in Africa or even to ancient Egypt. As well different markets. as demonstrating how technology like VR, AR and MR





The challenges facing the IT Channel in 2018 ;OPZPZ[OL`LHYVMKH[HHUKL]LY`[OPUNMYVTWYV[LJ[PVU[VTPNYH[PVU^PSSIL\UKLY JSVZLZJY\[PU`HZ^LHWWYVHJO[OL.+79KLHKSPULPU4H` management of hybrid cloud solutions, which can be THE UK’S FINANCIAL and political landscape has slowed due to the relative speed and complexity of existing continued to prove unpredictable and tumultuous as 2018 legacy systems. begins. With a variety of obstacles to overcome throughout The steps taken to ensure data security will also prove a the year, the IT Channel continues to face a barrage of problem. While the confidence from the IT Channel in internal and external pressures. cloud systems to safely house sensitive data has increased One of the looming challenges to face the IT Channel in significantly in recent years, there is still an issue of 2018 is the introduction of GDPR in May. While some securely transferring and housing this data. This hasn’t businesses are fully prepared for the change, others are still been helped by recent data breaches; it’s up to VARs realising the impact it could have on them and how and MSPs to reassure their customers that they they communicate with their customers. Nearly can provide a secure and stable solution. 40 per cent of Channel leaders, surveyed in As business operations become ever more our European Channel in 2020 research, dependent on this technology, the demand believe this will be the biggest disruptive “It’s up to VARs factor for the between now and 2020. and MSPs to provide for supporting skills is continuously growing. Industries are being made to Alongside these considerations, the a secure and stable reduce the gap by increasing education Channel is having to adapt to the way solution” provision for technical skills, in both customers want to consume their services existing and new employees. Although there by increasing customer-centric behaviours. is confidence in the Channel that the skills gap The main focus now for VARs and managed will be reduced by 2020, the industry must take a service providers is to provide a consultative, big leap towards this in the next 12 months. on-demand service, working towards a solution that For many years, vendors have controlled how the IT meets the growth aspirations of their customers. This is Channel operates in terms of the lifecycle and consumption being facilitated through a growing preference for a more of technology. The difference today is that the customer is flexible, scalable OPEX-based model, which has been best now in control, dictating what they require to drive demonstrated through the surge in cloud migration. business outcomes. As a result, the emphasis on innovating Although migration to the cloud has long been on the to remain relevant for customers – both today and into the lips of the biggest and smallest organisations that are looking to enhance overall efficiency, the Channel still faces future – has never been more crucial, not only for the vendors but all Channel partners. a number of challenges. This includes the adoption and



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Our promise to you. VIP will always deal with you professionally and courteously | VIP will never leave you with a problem of our own making VIP will always be informative in our communications | VIP will look to support you and grow your business VIP will help educate you about our channel | VIP will always be fair to you & competitive on price Not kept our promise? Please tell us because your feedback will help us to deliver a better service. You can speak directly to our Managing Director, Rich Marsden on 07554 455 439 or


A new reality 4PJYVZVM[[\YULKOLHKZ^P[O/VSV3LUZPUI\[^P[O[OLSH\UJO VMP[ZTP_LKYLHSP[`WSH[MVYT1HTLZ.\PVU<2>PUKV^ZJH[LNVY` THUHNLY[LSSZ1VUH[OHU,HZ[VUHIV\[[OL[LJO»ZIYPNO[M\[\YL How has the reaction been to the platform and do you feel it has had a strong launch? It’s been positive. We’ve launched with some of the big retailers in the UK. So if I talked specifically about the UK elements of this we have launched with Dixons Carphone Group, Curry’s PC World and the likes of John Lewis and Amazon where we’ve really seen great traction, particularly with people buying gaming PCs, gaming laptops and gaming desktops. This amazingly immersive experience is now available through games and applications from the Microsoft store. Games like Super Hot VR, Arizona ^^^WJYVUSPULIPa

Sunshine Space Pirate Trainer, and the broader Steam catalog have seen that audience being particularly receptive in this early stage of launch. So, yes we’re really pleased with that. And you’ve seen people mostly pick up on it as a gaming thing to begin with? Primarily yes, but we have other experiences. We’ve been doing demos in stores with our partners, so we get a good read on what people are enjoying from the experience as well. Outside of gaming, there are other experience like HoloTour that people find really 4HYJOc


“It’s great that we have all these companies coming to the table because they bring their own brand, their unique look and feel”

engaging and they can see the benefits that this will bring to the likes of education in the future. Minecraft is another one that sort of spans outside the specific gaming area and opens up to a slightly different gaming audience which is also good. So that’s something else you can enjoy with Windows Mixed Reality. In terms of the headsets themselves you’ve paired with a Acer, Dell, Lenovo and HP. How closely did Microsoft work with them in the development? We worked very closely on the development of their headsets, right the way through to the launch. Partners actually license Microsoft technology that we’ve used in Hololens so the inside-out tracking cameras that we have on the headsets are all delivering a really good quality of experience no matter which brand you’re using. The same applies with the optics of the lenses. We’ve made sure they’re all giving the same level of fidelity and experience. It’s great that we have all these companies coming to the table because they bring their own brand, their unique look and feel, the differences in the way that you wear them on your head, the materials, etc. This gives consumers a choice in terms of what their preference is. Ultimately they all get the same level of experience whichever device they’re using because we want to make sure everyone gets a good experience combined with whatever PC that they are using.


Is there a level of quality or a benchmark that Microsoft goes to these vendors with and says that it has to meet? For the headsets yes there is and there is for the PCs as well. So we’ll actually conduct testing with the manufacturers of the PCs to make sure that they work really well in terms of the components that are inside them. We have a standard called Windows Mixed Reality Ultra and we have Windows Mixed Reality. Windows Mixed Reality delivers the best, high resolution experience for gaming. Windows Mixed Reality Ultra doesn’t cover all the games, but gives everyone an opportunity on a slightly less powerful PC, without some of the most popular Nvidia graphics cards in there, to enjoy these experiences as well.


The first wave of VR headsets had a very high barrier to entry. How big a factor was accessibility in the development? It’s definitely something that Microsoft wants to continue to explore so that more and more people can enjoy a really good experience of mixed reality or virtual reality. There’s still some way to go to fully bring it to all PCs in the future, but we’re continuing to work to do that and bring the content experiences to support that as well so that more and more consumers can enjoy incredible experiences. They may not be able to just play games, but that’s more of early evolution over time as more people get involved. The big thing is for people to try this because so many people haven’t tried fully immersive virtual reality yet. That’s been part of our focus with Currys PC World and John Lewis, so that you can go into select stores and try this out for yourself if ^^^WJYVUSPULIPa

you haven’t tried it at an event or at a friend’s house so far. Because that’s a key part to teach people to understand the benefits of this. Do you think that consumers are generally more aware of what the experience is compared with this time 12 months ago? Yes, I do, but there’s still a huge number of people in the UK who haven’t tried it yet, or at least tried a good experience of virtual reality. But as more and more pop-up locations appear where you can pay and play, that helps people understand what virtual reality is and how incredible it can be. But making sure that they have got the right device to really get that great experience in the home is the next stage. And then bringing it in and engaging with it with all the content that’s out there already and the future content that’s going to come. I think it’s still, 4HYJOc


relatively speaking, early days in the grand scheme of things. As that technology is adopted, it does take time for it to reach the real mass market. We’re still not in the mass market yet with this. So who do you think the onus falls on to get the tech infront of more people? Do you think it’s down to the retailers on the high street, or is it up to the vendors themselves? I think it’s down to all of us working together to create the category. Ultimately as more and more consumers

“It’s down to all of us working together to create the category”


get their hands on this equipment and use it, they’ll be showing it to friends and family so that’s a key area. It is important that it is at the right events and showing up in retail stores as well. There’s obviously a cost equation in terms of how many stores to go to. But we’re making good progress and learning along the way. The key thing is that we know the people who are trying it out are blown away by it and they think it’s incredible. Those people buy it and are using it and so that is great. Was there a particular reason that Microsoft didn’t just say ‘okay we’re building the platform and we’re going to build the hardware ourselves’? At Microsoft we love to work with our partners to give them the benefit of the new technologies that we’ve created. We’ll continue to do that in the future. There’s a great opportunity for them to bring their own flavour to it, their expertise around hardware development to make it an even better experience and to give consumers the choice of brand or materials or design or colour that the different manufacturers can bring. They also have their own audiences and affiliations so there’s a great way that they could tie Windows Mixed Reality to that as well.


What was the thinking behind the house set up you boot into with the headset? It’s called Clifftop House and the idea is that it makes it more of a friendly, familiar environment for you when you’re engaging in this new experience. So that becomes your virtual house and you’re able to customise it, and put pictures on the walls, holograms at different places, or screens on the walls. And that’s where you start to see some of the mixed reality platform expand that by mixing the real with the virtual world. You can virtual screens on real walls where the device has mapped out the room that you’re in. Whereas in the consumer Mixed Reality headsets you’re in this kind of virtual world but again you’re able to interact in a similar way using the same applications, the same screens and same holograms as well. So there’s that part to it, but it’s ultimately about making your own. Whenever you go into it if you’ve moved your laptop and your headset to a different place and mapped out a different location to experience it in, you still go into the same environment so you could show it to other people around if they were trying it out. You can find things as quickly as you can on your Windows desktop environment, but it’s a beautiful and immersive environment for people to get into when they start using it. I think longer term as well it’s about how you make the environment more sociable. So how when you’re in this virtual experience could you bring


in a friend who’s also in a virtual experience that they could explore your house and you could sit and watch yourself together or do other things. We’re looking at it from that perspective as well as the platform grows and develops. Right now, it’s it’s a mixed reality product with the cameras on the front, but all the applications for it are VR. Pretty much, yeah. The platform itself is Windows and we have at the moment two opposite ends of the spectrum experience. HoloLens is true mixed reality and then we have new headsets which are, essentially, a virtual reality and fully immersive experience. The aim is for developers to develop a hologram or an application that works across both headsets, both experiences. But obviously you’ll get a different level of experience, one being fully 360 immersive, and the other being fully mixed. As time goes by, those technologies will evolve and merge and so you’ll be able to wear one headset, jump between a truly mixed environment and then flip to a truly virtual environment. Because there are benefits to both depending on what you’re trying to get out of the experience. But it means that people developing on Windows Mixed Reality today won’t have to start developing on different platforms in the future, so they can create one experience that will span across both platforms as we move forward. It makes it easier for developers to



develop as well because they use the same tools. Not every experience they create will work across both today, obviously some things donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make sense. For example, HoloTour is an app that we have in the store that works on HoloLens and also works on the new mixed reality headsets that allows you to go to Rome and see the Colosseum be rebuilt around you. But it feels very different depending on which one youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re enjoying. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s much more immersive when youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re using some of the newer mixed reality headsets. The other thing is costs. HoloLens is very expensive because of the technology required to bring that to be a good experience.Whereas we are now able to connect a roughly ÂŁ400 headset with controllers to a powerful PC. That needs a good PC, but for a much lower price a lot of people can now enjoy the mixed reality platform and start using it. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about setting us up for the long term as this mixed reality platform develops and gives the breadth of experiences that weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking to bring to people. From my brief experience of HoloLens in the past, I would see it more as an educational and enterprise tool, and from my time with mixed reality that definitely seems like itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s more of a consumer focused device. Is that the idea that Microsoft has of the two? Yes it is today. There are two extremes if you like. There is commercial enterprise, amazing for training people and locking some incredible things for business. At the moment the Windows Mixed Reality sets are primarily for consumers, primarily for gamers. As I said you want to unlock these great experiences and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking to open that up to more people as time goes by.


What are some of the more interesting apps and programs youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve seen with the tech? Outside of the games environment, the ones that really captivate me personally are some of the entertainment experiences, on the educational side of things as well. So I really love HoloTour. I love the fact that you go somewhere youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve never been before and get an understanding of the place. You can see the Colosseum or ancient Machu Picchu rebuilt so youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re learning about history in a completely immersive way. So I think it would be amazing for education as we move into the future. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m seeing things like a blue whale going through the oceans, being at events with 360 videos. Some of the kind of VR-based entertainment stuff like Free The Night shows where entertainment can go beyond film and beyond this big screen entertainment. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be able to be able to immerse yourself in some amazing things more and more into the future. Lastly I just want to talk about the future. There are four vendors which are producing headsets in the UK, are there any other parties youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got on board that are going to be bringing headsets out? I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t about that know yet for the UK but there are other partners involved around the world. Watch this space really in terms of what else comes to the UK and around the world over the next few years. In the US, Samsung and Asus have headsets out. Lots more possibilities and options are to come. But nothing else to say specifically for the UK at this stage. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an exciting experience for all of us as technology evolves, as the consumer evolves and as people get used to the experience. As the months and years unfold more and more content will come into play as well.


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VERY YEAR since Oculus pushed out its prototype Rift, industry experts have hailed the coming 12 months ‘as the year VR will take off’. However, four years later and the world is still waiting for VR to live up to the hype. But 2018 really could be the year that VR (and AR) finally fulfils its much-awaited potential. Both VR and AR are starting to see positive growth within the consumer market, but the use of both in business is set to have an even greater impact across a wide range of industries. Enterprise services will help lead growth over the next 12 months, with IDC predicting global spend on products and services related to AR and VR to grow by more than 100 per cent annually, going from $11.4 billion last year to $214 billion by 2021. Education, hospitality and healthcare are just a few areas where VR and AR are set to boom over the course of the next year. As Simon Woodman, Exertis Mobile director, says ‘VR and AR technology can provide many benefits’ for business and correspondingly for the Channel. “There is no question that VR can benefit business,” he states. “There’s no shortage of opportunities in terms of applications and vertical markets. However, cost and content still remain an issue in deployment of these technologies. Hardware costs are decreasing and there is new content being developed all the time. The difficulty is monetising the opportunity and providing a commercial proposition that can be taken to market.” And while Woodman believes both VR and AR will be deployed successfully in a variety of industries, he doesn’t see it as a one-size-fits-all solution. “Some vertical industries will be better suited to one or other of the technologies,” he adds. “VR typically requires a headset connected to a high-end PC, or a headset plus mobile device, however AR does not necessarily require any hardware beyond a tablet or smartphone. Therefore, AR




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is perhaps better suited to certain jobs and roles as it can be experienced without obstructing the user’s vision. Instead of maintenance workers having to consult a manual before undertaking a repair, they could follow the latest technical drawing or even a video, hands-free, while working, thereby improving efficiency and safety. AR is likely to become more common because there are so many devices available.” One area which is already seeing AR/ VR being rolled out is within retail. It is already being used increasingly by pop-up stores in shopping malls and supermarkets have been experimenting with augmented labels that provide information on a product’s nutritional value. In some instances, retailers have rolled out consumer-facing applications that let them virtually try on clothing, makeup, and accessories. The travel and tourism market is another area that has started dabbling with VR and AR as a means to sell holiday packages to consumers. However, the Home market is the area which has arguably seen the best use of AR/ VR so far. With the Dulux app, users can digitally test out colours on their walls without having to physically paint. Likewise, IKEA’s AR-powered app lets shoppers visualise furniture in their homes before they buy. As Tom Murray, IT Manager at UXG, elaborates: “The new IKEA application is one of the first to utilise new AR capabilities of the latest generation devices without the need for ‘markers’. This allows them to make informed decisions and more confident purchases. It also showcases a company adopting and adapting technology smartly to benefit their customers. With VR becoming more commonplace, its uses to drive growth are becoming more creative. With apps as wide-ranging in scope as producers of large-scale machinery being able to show off at exhibitions, to McDonald’s trialling its own version of Google Cardboard. VR is being used to creatively solve problems and immerse customers into brands. “Before, AR was a bit fiddly to get into the endusers hands. Normally it would require a real-world marker which would then allow the application to interpret what should be shown on the device, whether it’s a 3D model, video or image. With the introduction of ARKit and ARCore in 2017 I believe we’ll start to see user adoption grow. These don’t require external markers to produce AR experiences and brings accessibility for end users and developers.” The possibilities are literally endless for the adoption of AR and VR in business. Retailers look likely to be among the earliest adopters with the education sector not far behind. This is a technology not to be ignored or seen as a fad. Seeing some of the largest tech giants in the world throw their weight behind it is testimony enough to its seriousness. 4HYJOc


y t l e v o The n



IRTUAL REALITY IS an established tech at this point. While there is still a large number of people who haven’t tried it out, most people with a rough understanding of the tech space in 2018 will at least be aware of how it works, even if it’s just with a headset you stick a mobile phone in. While that increased level of awareness and category education can only be a good thing, we now find ourselves with a whole other, more complicated question: how does VR functionality outlast its novelty? Back in October 2016, Oculus CTO John Carmack (of Doom fame) said that ‘we are coasting on novelty’ when it comes to VR. Now, 18 months later, there is every chance that the industry has run out of coasting momentum. “Consumers have high expectation of VR,” notes Chillblast sales director Ben Miles. “It’s a tech that has been launched unsuccessfully in the past (e.g. Nintendo’s Virtual Boy) and this time people are being told it’s here and this time it is awesome.” Certainly, with high prices and expensive marketing campaigns, the messaging being conveyed by headset vendors is that we are in the VR age. But a problem we now are facing is that while the hardware is becoming increasingly accessible, there isn’t


enough content to keep users hooked. VR, for many, is still waiting for its Super Mario Bros. moment. “The technology is only as good as its content,” declares Exertis’ head of gaming Ross Holt. “Consumers are looking for both killer apps (games) and essential use-cases beyond gaming. Think about what Wii Sports did for Nintendo.” While the vendors themselves continue to profess that the tech will continue to grow into the market, from both a vendor (Nokia cut its investments in VR in late 2017, citing market developments that were taking longer than expected) and a retail perspective, desires to be involved have cooled. “We’ve found that a lot of people use VR a few times, and then go back to using a normal monitor,” says Phil Griffiths, owner of Chips Computers in Chesterfield. “This is because the games they want to play don’t support it and or the novelty wears off.” Another contributing factor here is cost. While prices have come down – Oculus’ ‘Summer of Rift’ promotion (that saw the headset slashed to £399) was made permanent in October – they are still a high barrier to entry for tech with no killer app. “Nearly three quarters of consumers who are interested in VR have stayed away due to the price of the devices,” states GfK’s Carl West.



OR So perhaps the best way for the Channel to make money from VR right now isn’t from consumers, but by selling for enterprise use. This certainly is the case for system builder Chillblast, says Miles. “Our approach to selling VR is to offer it as an end to end business solution. As well as delivering class-leading VR-ready computer systems, Chillblast also has the in-house capability to produce complete VR solutions from scratch. “We’ve worked closely with a broad range of clients to deliver a wide array of VR experiences, from product configurators for the automotive industry to virtual reality architectural walkthrough experiences and training simulations for defence and airline sectors. Our in-house team of game developers can model any scenario a company requires and our solutions are scalable from a single product launch to a complete training or simulation solution.” PR guru Maggie Zaboura agrees that business is where VR will really shine. “Gaming is just the start, just look at the success of VR experiences at theme parks, in cinemas, car showrooms and travel agencies. The British Museum hosted a VR experience that took visitors back to the Bronze Age, and the Natural History Museum worked with Sir David Attenborough on a VR exhibit. Thomas Cook’s VR experience of flying over the Manhattan skyline led to a 190 per cent increase in New York excursion revenue, and Canada’s VR trek through British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest led to a 5 per cent increase in


“Consumers have high expectation of VR” )LU4PSLZ*OPSSISHZ[

visitors. Even NASA are experimenting with VR for training purposes, and these show the broader potential. Content and platform providers should consider cases like these when developing a VR strategy.” VR is one of the most divisive topics in the Channel today. For every person saying that it’s a technology that will revolutionise the way that we will live and work, there is a skeptic calling it a fad that will go the way of other failed experiments (“Unfortunately, I see VR going the same way as 3D TVs,” says Griffiths). The truth is likely somewhere in the middle, with long-term potential still there but the immediate future is a bit murkier. As Utopia Computers boss Craig Hume puts it: “If you are just looking for a quick profit VR is probably not for you, at least not now. However if you have a passion for technology, I say spend your time understanding, sharing and exploring, the future is just round the next corner and who knows you could become the next specialist to be able to take advantage of this amazing technology.”





ICOLE LIN IS no stranger to Synology. When you see someone being announced as the new managing director of a company, chances are they’re making a move from an executive position at another firm. Lin however has grown with the Taiwanese security business since joining in 2012. “For most of my time at Synology, I served in the product management department. I authored three Synology technical whitepapers for our software and service during my years there,” she notes. “The knowledge and experience developing products that meet and address the needs of our customers laid the groundwork for my career at Synology.” While Lin is focused on the task of expanding Synology’s business, she is also aware of her significance. “It’s my sincere honour to be assigned the UK and Nordics market as the first female MD; however I prefer not to focus on gender when it comes to leadership,” she adds. “Although I am the first female MD for Synology UK, this is not the first time Synology globally has had a female executive. Synology’s corporate culture encourages anyone with passion to ascend to leading positions, in spite of attributes like age, gender and other backgrounds.” One thing for certain is that Lin is thoroughly established and engrained in the company as a vital part of operations, having worked – and spoken – all over the world for the




“Synology has evolved greatly over the years by listening to customers”

security firm. This, she believes, gives her a ‘competitive edge’ over anyone who potentially could have come in from outside, and ultimately drove her to pursue the managing director role. “I have been the keynote speaker at multiple Synology events in Taiwan, Australia and other Asian countries. These contribute largely to my command over our competitive edge and during face-toface interactions I was able to see the difference Synology makes to our clients. These experiences drove me to step out of the labs and pursue a market-facing role.” And though she seems focused on progressing herself professionally and Synology’s market share, Lin’s passionate drive for success is driven by a passion for technology itself and what it can bring to people in their everyday lives. “I came to this industry with a firm belief that technology is empowering to all who aspire for a better life and career accomplishment. “I’m still here because Synology did just that for me. It makes my home safer and my work easier – the balance between which has become even more important now with a family role. I can be assured the privacy which I care most for my family is not compromised with convenience, knowing that no one will be looking at our photos and playlist while we enjoy the benefits of the Cloud.” Synology, which was founded in 2000 by Cheen Liao and Philip Wong – both


formerly of Microsoft – celebrates its 10th anniversary of operating in the UK market this year and is still working out of its Milton Keynes base. It has grown massively in the market in those 10 years, but Lin is not resting on her laurels and is determined to continue progressing hand-in-hand with its customers. And that’s an aspect Lin stresses. Synology has succeeded in such a competitive marketplace because it pays attention to what its customers want. “Synology has evolved greatly over the years by listening to customers,” she says. “And that includes myself! I feel very proud to have been a part of its becoming and now one of its missionaries.” As for her plan for the company, education is key. Synology’s product offering is competitive across the board from NAS to datacentre-scaled servers, and getting those products in front of customers and resellers is where Lin sees the company winning. “In the coming years, I want to introduce all homes and offices in our territories to Synology’s private storage and surveillance solutions. I am certain with the feature readiness and product maturity Synology customers will find no better option.” Nicole Lin is not lacking in confidence – in herself, the product or the company – and has a bold ambition to grow Synology. A veritable brand-loyal managing director if ever there was one, Lin is ready, willing and able to take Synology to the next level.





HERE IS NOTHING new about schools being quick off the mark when it comes to introducing new technology into the classroom. First came computers, then it was the interactive whiteboard, and more recently tablets have been introduced as a learning tool at all levels. And while interactive whiteboards and tablets have undoubtedly changed the set-up of the classroom, the way in which teachers actually go about teaching has largely remained the same since the mid ‘90s. That is where Rich Henderson, director of Global Education Solutions at Lenovo, believes VR can come into its own. “Overall, in education there has been an explosion in technology uptake, and yet teaching hasn’t really changed much for the last 20 years,” he explains. “In truth, teaching hasn’t adapted at the same pace as the technology that teachers are using. However, with VR there is a great opportunity for change. We want to show how VR can disrupt the way teachers are currently teaching for the benefit of both teachers and students.” He adds: “VR should be seen as a solution to supplement teaching, rather than an additional piece of hardware. For


example, a biology teacher who is teaching their class about cells can use VR to actually show their students inside of cells. They can then relate what the students have seen using VR with the curriculum that they need to teach. It isn’t about replacing teaching, but instead VR is there to assist teachers by engaging students.” With VR being marketed as one for the teachers as well as the students, it begs the question: ‘Do teachers even want it?’ Well, according to Lenovo’s own, research, teachers cannot wait to get VR into their classrooms. The study found that 94 per cent of teachers in the UK believe that VR ‘would benefit the classroom’, with 84 per cent believing that VR will be ‘crucial in creating the workforce of tomorrow’. On a more practical level, more than a third admitted that they struggled to make ‘things in the world real and relatable when their students have not experienced them previously’, with over half of teachers surveyed saying that ‘grades would go up by delivering new experiences such as climbing Everest through VR’. It is through those experiences that Lenovo believes VR has the power to level the playing field by giving



“Our job is to show teachers how they can use VR to enhance learning”


children opportunities they previously didn’t have access to. In fact, Henderson believes that it is likely to be pivotal to the success of VR in education. “Of course, there will always be some teachers who see VR as a gimmick and refuse to accept the benefits it can bring,” Henderson says. “Our job is to show teachers how they can use VR to enhance learning for their students. VR really provides the ability to give all students the chance to experience certain things that they cannot experience in their daily lives.” He adds: “For children who don’t have the chance to go on holiday and see different places, VR can do that for them. For history classes, VR can even take student back in time and place them on the beaches of D-Day.”



As VR continues to build momentum across different platforms and within schools, it provides a wealth of opportunities for partnership throughout the ecosystem. Goldman Sachs estimates that roughly $700 million will be invested in AR/VR applications in education by 2025, so there looks like there will be plenty of money to be made. Henderson confirmed that all Lenovo partners will have access to a range of products developed specifically for the edTech market. Later this year, the firm will be offering three separate â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;class kitsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; aimed primarily at the secondary school market. Launching in April in the US Lenovoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s kits will start from $2,700. For that amount, a school would receive three headsets with access to over 100 apps from the Google Daydream store and training and tutorials on how to best implement VR into the curriculum. A further two packages will also be put on the market providing 10 and 24 headsets respectively. As Henderson explains the concept of VR in the classroom is for the teacher â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;to use alongside traditional learning techniquesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;. Therefore there is no need for each student to have their own headset (for the moment anyway). And Henderson doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t believe there will be need or demand for individual headsets for each child for at least another five to ten years. Close to home, the UK looks like being a hot destination for VR and â&#x20AC;&#x201C; more importantly â&#x20AC;&#x201C; for those selling VR.


â&#x20AC;&#x153;The UK is actually one of the leaders in terms of introducing technology into the classroom,â&#x20AC;? Henderson adds. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We believe that the UK and North America will continue to lead when it comes to implementing VR into the classroom.â&#x20AC;? And in summary Henderson concludes: â&#x20AC;&#x153;VR will continue to grow in other areas such as the gaming market, however the education sector will be right at the forefront of developing this technology. In particular, VR in education will lead to a lot of new content being made and I believe that we will see a great deal of apps designed specially for the edTech market in 2018.â&#x20AC;?

â&#x20AC;&#x153;The UK is actually one of the leaders in terms of introducing technology into the classroomâ&#x20AC;?



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Fallout 4 VR Platform: Â HTC Vive It would be very easy to fill this list with VR versions of pre-existing games that have been retrofitted to support a headset, but Fallout 4 VR stands out as a noteworthy entry in this list. Based on the primary conceit that the jingoistic ideology of 1950s America never went out of fashion, that technology advanced far quicker than in reality and that the world was plummeted into full-on nuclear war, Fallout 4 places players in the middle of a post-apocalyptic open world as they forage for survival supplies. Making the jump to VR, none of the original gameâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s visuals are lost thanks to pretty hefty system requirements of a GeForce GTX 1070 or AMD RX Vega 56 and an expensive HTC Vive headset. What youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re getting is the full Fallout 4 experience which is sure to wow anyone who tries it out.

Until Dawn: Rush of Blood Platform: PlayStation VR Have you ever gone on a runaway mine train at a theme park and wished you could do it at home and make it a lot scarier while shooting clowns? Well, step right up. It might be a couple of years old at this point, but for our money, Until Dawn: Rush of Blood is one of the best ways to show off how VR can be used to effectively scare the living daylights out of you. Playfully spinning off from 2015â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s teen slasher homage Until Dawn, Rush of Blood takes a decidedly more action-packed approach as players hurtle through hellish scenarios batting off whatever flies at them. The game is also still the strongest case for the (as of yet mostly untapped) potential of the PlayStation VR, unrestricted by the consoleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hardware limitations and is a testament to a compelling gameplay gimmick.




Superhot VR

Job Simulator: The 2050 Archives

Platform: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, Windows MR

Platform: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR

From the title alone youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d think that this might be just a VR port of 2016â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s indie darling Superhot, but in fact developer Superhot Team decided that they had to rebuild the game from the ground up to make it work for VR. While it may have a minimalist aesthetic that follows traditional FPS mechanics, the unique hook is that time only progresses when the player moves. This turns what would be a frenetic shooter into an exercise in planning, strategy and puzzle-solving. It can be pretty tough in places, but the game never loses its sense of Matrix-like cool as you dodge bullets.

If Until Dawn: Rush Of Blood proved that VR can make you wet yourself out of fear, Job Simulator: The 2050 Archives is evidence that it can make you wet yourself with laughter. Taking place in a future where robots have taken over (because of course thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the future), Job Simulator presents playful renditions of â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;human jobsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;, or at least what the robots of 2050 think are human jobs. The game is broken up into different minigames â&#x20AC;&#x201C; â&#x20AC;&#x153;Auto Mechanicâ&#x20AC;?, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Gourmet Chef â&#x20AC;?, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Store Clerkâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Office Workerâ&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201C; that portray stereotyped and exaggerated versions of these jobs.

Star Trek: Bridge Crew

Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes

Platform: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, Windows Mixed Reality

Platform: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR

Trekkies all over the world lost their collective heads when Star Trek: Bridge Crew was announced at E3 2016 and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not hard to see why. Finally, their dreams of sitting on the bridge of a Starfleet ship would come to fruition. And even better, they could do it with their friends. One of the inherent appeals of Star Trek: Bridge Crew was that you could take on a role in the bridge crew of the title, working collectively with friends in VR to complete missions. The only downside is that everyone had to have their own PC or PS4, headset and copy of the game, making this an expensive exercise in fantasy fulfillment.

If Star Trek: Bridge Crewâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s multiplayer is a bit inaccessible due to equipment constraints, Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes is a completely unique experience that provides a two player game, innovatively using the two seperate displays. How it works is ingeniously simple. One player has a controller and the VR headset, the other has a controller and the main monitor. The VR player is presented with a bomb that has various contraptions and buttons on it while the other is looking at a bomb disposal instruction manual. What then ensues is a mad flurry of communication as they collectively try to figure out how to stop the bomb before it goes off.



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MCV Whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s in your team and what are their roles? Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re a four-person team. Jem Alexander and Jake Tucker are our content editors, with responsibilities for games development and business plus esports respectively. Marie Dealessandri is our senior staff writer with responsibility for influencer-related content. And I lead the team, providing editorial direction, working on native content deals and helping our events team organise a broad lineup of highly-respected industry events.

publishers has been steadily erased. We increasingly found big stories, say an indie developer self-publishing a competitive title, that intersected all three of our old brands, so we thought it best to join forces. The new MCV will speak to everyone in the industry, it will tackle the tricky issues and help individuals, studios and businesses of all sorts achieve their goals. Have a flick through and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll find lots of content that affect the PC games industry and the hardware the underpins it. You can read the magazine for free in its digital form at newbayeurope

Tell us a bit about MCVâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s history and role within the gaming industry What is the best event youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve attended as a team? MCV is just about to reach its 20th anniversary. That easily Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s less flashy game launches than there used to be, makes it the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s longest-running publication admittedly. Activision used to push the boat out every supporting the games industry. MCV started as a year for Call of Duty and once recreated a sizeable weekly primarily aimed at the UK games retail â&#x20AC;&#x153;The games warzone in and around Battersea Power Station channel, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s shifted over recent years to industry is for the night. The best event of late was the become an industry-spanning brand with a Monster Hunter World launch. They turned a website, daily email newsletter and a monthly evolving and we BBQ restaurant into a game-themed experience print run. Its role is to report upon, analyse and have to evolve for the weekend with a huge spit-roast outside support the UK games industry. To provide a with itâ&#x20AC;? providing plentiful meats for hungry gamers. platform for companies in the sector to Our biggest team outing every year is Gamescom, communicate and build better creative and when the whole team travel to Cologne in Germany for business relationships. the week and turn out three daily magazines to incredibly tight print deadlines. MCV has just been reimagined, how has that gone and what can readers look forward to Who is the best gamer? Towards the end of last year we took the decision to merge all our Jake is absolutely convinced that heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the most skilled in terms of gaming brands together. That brought MCV, Develop and Esports competitive games - particularly first person shooters â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Pro into a single team under the MCV brand. The games industry probably right. That said, we all have our strengths in our is constantly evolving and we have to evolve with it. Digital favourite genres. distribution has meant the line between developers and





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Whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s who? <Gladiatorial generosity>














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The channel technology event of the year is back! 19th April 2018 - Silverstone Circuit Come and discover the latest solutions and hear from industry experts. See what’s trending, what’s emerging and what’s right for your business. At ‘Plug in to Exertis’ we’ve got technology covered, it’s what we do best. One day, one great location, bursting with technology solutions for the living room through to the datacentre. So whether you are a new or existing customer this is the channel event for you!

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Profile for Future PLC

PCR March 2018  

PCR March 2018