Breakroom: A New Social Hub for Remote Work Teams, Education, and Conferences from Sinespace

Sinespace has decided to branch out into an area that has seen a mini-boom in recent months: social VR platforms whose aim is to provide an immersive social hub to bring together work teams who may be scattered across different neighbourhoods, different cities, even different countries!

This is a particularly critical need, as so many employees are now working in self-isolation from their homes in an effort to stop the spread of the current coronavirus pandemic. Keeping your team connected and motivated, when pre-existing lines of communication have been shattered and shared physical spaces are no longer available, can negatively impact a company’s productivity and morale, and its bottom line. Sinespace is selling Breakroom as a way to overcome these hurdles.

The concept is to bring your work team together in your own safe, secure, branded virtual world, providing team members a private space where they can hang out, connect with peers, chat around the virtual water cooler, and feel part of the group. Some of the benefits are:

  • Use live events and social hangouts to create momentum and enthusiasm;
  • Go beyond work collaboration tools to offer a full social space where your team members can be themselves;
  • Help people maintain the friendships they rely on in their daily lives, even if they are physically apart;
  • Support employee mental health while they self-isolate with shared spaces and activities, and combat the threat of depression and other mental health issues that isolation, worry, and fear can lead to.

Among the many features offered by Breakroom are:

  • Exhibition halls
  • Corporate headquarters
  • Amphitheaters
  • Open plan offices
  • Private offices
  • Student common rooms
  • Cinema and screening rooms
  • Live music venues
  • Casual game regions and tables
  • Breakout rooms
  • Hangouts
  • Explorable regions
  • Extensive avatar customization
  • 10,000+ virtual goods for shopping and building your own worlds
  • Full suite of communication tools (VOIP, IM and inworld email)
  • Video conferencing, video sharing and conferencing tools
  • Media sharing and desktop sharing tools
  • Branded exhibition stands
  • Event management system
  • Mature APIs for integrating other enterprise applications
  • In-world building and scene editing
  • HIPAA compliant regions for one-to-one therapy sessions
  • Support for live events including music, cinema, pub quizzes, seminar sessions

Breakroom is also partnering with a number of agency partners who can build a custom breakroom to your company’s specifications. And, of course, content designed by existing Sinespace developers can also be bought by users to use in their Breakrooms, giving them yet another avenue for sales.

Pricing for corporate users starts at US$500 per month for 50 seats, a fully-featured private custom branded space, with dedicated customer support. Additional seats can be purchased for only US$10 per month per seat. Bulk discounts are available; please contact the company for further details.

And Sinespace is offering Breakroom to state and public schools for free, with an unlimited number of seats! A product such as this can so easily bring students and teachers together, in an immersive, shared virtual space, in a way that Zoom and Webex simply cannot.

Breakroom

Wagner James Au of the long-running virtual worlds blog New World Notes has written several pieces about Breakroom: an introduction to the platform with a brief interview with lead developer Adam Frisby, as well as a poll asking potential education users what time slots they would prefer for live group demos.

And, I note with interest, among the staff listing for Breakroom, Wagner is listed under the job title of Public Relations for this new venture. You gotta hand it to Wagner; he knows how to hustle for his coin! He’s one of the hardest working men in the metaverse (after, of course, the utterly inexhaustible Draxtor Despres), and no doubt offers Sinespace the wealth of his many years of experience in virtual worlds.

On Friday, May 1st, Sinespace hosted the first open house of Breakroom, to demonstrate the various features of the platform for visitors. Sinespace staff demoed Breakrooms features to support remote work and teaching, including webcam calls, a dynamic whiteboard, screensharing, and a group quiz system.

A screencap from the Breakroom open house livestream (below)

And, if you feel the need to let off some steam, why not take your work team to the racetrack?

The race track in Breakroom

If you missed the open house, you can catch the entire hour-and-a-half livestream here. There’s lots to see and do! Breakroom is the perfect virtual meeting spot for your work team to feel connected and energized.

To get started in Breakroom, just fill out the form at the bottom of their official website, and a representative from the company will get in touch with you. There are also downloadable demo versions of Breakroom for both Windows and MacOS users, if you want to kick the tires, test out the features, and see how Breakroom can work for your company.

More information about Sinespace is available from their website, and you can also follow them on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Discord, and YouTube.


This blogpost is sponsored by Sinespace, and was written in my role as an embedded reporter for this virtual world (more details here). 

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Linden Lab Launches New Viewer to Broadcast Live Video Events to Virtual Audiences with Screening of Adult Swim’s The Shivering Truth on Friday, May 8th, 2020

The ongoing global public health crisis that is the coronavirus pandemic has forced many media companies to rethink how they promote their content and attract eyeballs. Flashy, crowded launch parties (with the requisite celebrities and attendant social media influencers) are simply out of the question, and savvier metaverse platforms are neatly stepping into the newly-created marketplace for virtual events.

One such event is taking place in Second Life on Friday, May, 8th: Adult Swim is the first media partnership to use the new limited-release Second Life Viewer. In a press release, Linden Lab reports:

Be among the first to experience live video streaming inside Second Life at an exclusive Adult Swim screening event, held this Friday, May 8 at 4:00 p.m. (SLT/Pacific)/7:00 p.m. (ET). 

Watch two classic episodes and two all-new unreleased episodes from the forthcoming second season of “The Shivering Truth” at this special event, to be held in-world at a new venue created exclusively for this screening.

During the event, you can chat with fellow fans of the show and other special guests as you experience the show together for the first time in the virtual world. Free limited-edition virtual gifts and mementos will also be distributed during and after the show — just look for the “Free Gifts” kiosk near the front entrance. 

The event also marks the first media partnership utilizing the new limited-release Second Life Viewer, which enables content creators and entertainment companies to broadcast live video events to virtual world audiences. In the future, you may see several new forms of entertainment including movie and TV premieres, live concerts, and artist/fan meet-and-greets. We’re very excited to partner with Adult Swim for the debut of this new feature, which we plan to integrate into the main Second Life Viewer release in the coming weeks.

Those of us who have given up the default Second Life viewer, in favour of more fully-featured alternatives such as Firestorm, will need to download and install the special view from SL before visiting the suitably spooky venue (at this SLURL). I expect that this will be the first of many such media events in future, and no doubt Linden Lab hopes to attract more users to Second Life via these initiatives.