Victorian startup PHORIA nominated for internet’s highest honour

Melbourne-based tech startup PHORIA are vying to take out one of the internet’s highly coveted awards at the 2020 Webbys with their AR gameplay REWILD Our Planet.

“The Webby’s truly represents the intersection of creativity, digital content and the best of the internet.” PHORIA Co-founder Trent Clews-de Castella


Founded in 2012 by Trent Clews-de Castella and Joseph Purdam, PHORIA is a world-leading immersive tech studio from Melbourne that specialises in cutting-edge Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality (VR/AR/MR/XR) technology. They create powerful user interactions and social experiences, all with the goal to generate a positive impact on the world.

With a globally recognised team of developers, creatives and partners, PHORIA are on a mission to transform human experiences and augment intelligent environments.

Showcasing the Earth’s vulnerability through innovative storytelling

REWILD Our Planet was developed in partnership with PHORIA, Netflix, WWF, Google, ArtScience Museum, and Arup. The experience incorporates excerpts from the Netflix original documentary series Our Planet narrated by renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough.

The AR gameplay focuses on restoring Earth’s diverse regional landscapes of forest, grassland, ocean and frozen.

Visitors interact with each virtual landscape, unlocking weather patterns and unique animal encounters.

As these landscapes are dewilded, visitors need to work together quickly to restore nature. This collaborative game mechanic culminates in a call to action, as visitors are encouraged to pledge action for the environment.

PHORIA developed REWILD Our Planet as a mobile experience with new cutting-edge AR features, designed to take the experience further and instill even more awe and delight.

If you want to learn more and help support the project, please check out the REWILD case study video and explore their interactive website

Why the Webbys?

We asked Co-Founder of PHORIA, Trent Clews-de Castella (pictured centre on the right) about the Webbys and why they’ve entered the competiton.

“The Webbys has been a long-term goal of ours. It truly represents the intersection of creativity, digital content and the best of the internet,” says Trent, and his team felt honoured to be nominated alongside some incredible AR projects from world leaders in this space.

About the Webbys

The Webby Awards were established in 1996 during the Web’s infancy.

The Awards are presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS) – a 2000 plus member judging body. The Academy is comprised of Executive Members – leading web experts, business figures, luminaries, visionaries and creative celebrities and Associate Members who are former Webby Winners, Nominees and other Internet professionals.

Winning a Webby Award is considered the Internet’s highest honour.

Reflecting the tremendous growth of the Internet, The Webbys now honors excellence in seven major media types: Websites, Video, Advertising, Media & PR, Social, Apps, Mobile, & Voice, Games, and Podcasts.

PHORIA – looking ahead

“We’re planning to continue the journey with WWF this year and evolve the project with new AR features thanks to our friends at Google,” says Trent.

“We’re also excited to continue forging forward with immersive technology as a tool for change and help build virtual bridges to help us connect with the environment, and each other.”

Support Victorian companies taking on the world!

Throw your support behind Melburnians breaking boundaries with their great ideas by voting for PHORIA.

Cast your vote

The deadline for lodging votes is 7 May 2020.

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