Strivr Labs Inc. is a virtual reality sports coaching startup that was founded in 2015 and has started working with the NBA and NFL teams. But after a year, he Gained a new type of customer Walmart, which has adopted a virtual reality system for employee training. Verizon and Bank of America, among others, have followed suit in adopting its platform.
But Strivr is one of the smallest fish that swims in a developing pond Big companies are moving deeper In the enterprise learning market, including Microsoft and Meta.
To help it compete, Strivr is building a partner network for enterprise deployment of its virtual reality technology. It is opening its platform to make it easier for third party providers to develop content and for services and technology providers to support adoption of its VR technology.
This month, it unveiled partnership agreements with companies including VMware, Qualcomm and Accenture, as well as headphone maker Pico and others. Strivr uses Meta- and Pico-owned Oculus headphones on its platform.
Building an ecosystem
VR . training It requires headphones, software, content, data analytics and consulting services, and “and we need to connect a lot of the systems out there,” said Derek Belch, founder and CEO of Strivr, based in Palo Alto, California.
Partnerships were working for Strivr. Belch noted the relationship with Meta and Oculus, for example, calling it a “productive relationship.” Accenture is an investor, and so is Workday. Strivr is now working with Workday on a formal integration.
Derek BelchFounder and CEO, Strivr
“As of today, we work with these companies, we don’t compete with them,” he said.
With VMware, Belch said users can manage headphones using Mobile Device Management Under one umbrella like tablets and other mobile devices.
The relationship with Qualcomm, a maker of semiconductor products and wireless technology, and a manufacturer of virtual reality hardware chips, enables Strivr to provide feedback on “what’s going on and what’s not happening in the field,” which could help design future chips, Belch said.
Like all VR platforms, Strivr’s VR system is proprietary, said Josh Persin, HR analyst, because “there are no standards for any of this, so Strivr is trying to build an ecosystem.”
Strivr has been “essentially a leader in the enterprise VR market”, and its “customers want more options – different goggles, the opportunity to use other development partners, and the interconnection of the Strivr system in [learning management system] and other infrastructure” and using it as their own in-house development tool, Bersin said.
Bersin compares Strivr’s decision to open its platform as similar to Apple’s decision to create an app store.
Strivr, which expects to expand its partner network, said its system has trained more than a million workers at various companies.
The initial adopters are larger companies that have money to spend on learning dedicated to virtual reality. “Content creation is the most expensive part,” Belch said.
For medium and small businesses, Belch said, “there is no robust library of off-the-shelf VR content.” “It’s not as expensive as it was a few years ago, but we’re still at the stage where it’s ready to go into the SME world.”
As for how Strivr will co-exist with the tech giants, Belch said this is something to be determined.
“Sometimes startups like us compete with big companies like Microsoft, sometimes we partner with them, sometimes they call us and say, ‘We want to acquire you,'” Belch said. “It’s too early to say how we will compete with the biggest players.”
Patrick Thibodeau covers HCM and ERP technologies for the TechTarget Editorial. He has worked for more than two decades as an IT reporter for the organization.