Currently DARK has or is being shown in 16 countries, with 41 licenses for different dome systems.
If we assumed a standard license cost (in perpetuity) of $5000 per install (an industry default license fee), this would have generated an income of $205,000, so far.
We released it for free as it is publicly-funded science, for everyone to try and understand.
Not bad for a project that cost around $50,000 (including in-kind expenditure.)
It is difficult to ascertain data about audience numbers and ticketing charges per head, but this would be invaluable data for financial modelling.
Domes are of different sizes, require different resolution versions, technologies and personnel to process and present content, and can accommodate very different audiences, in terms of numbers and demographics and timeframes. It’s a difficult market to understand – particularly going forward as it evolves and changes, driven by new technologies and new ways of presenting innovative content.
The point being : Science organisations – their decision-makers and leaders – can help generate cutting-edge immersive fulldome content that will reach hundreds-of-thousands of people worldwide if they take a creative approach to their data and their public outreach strategies. And if they’re prepared to take a punt and do something unusual.
Fulldome represents a coherent medium via which to engage audiences in new ways, with intellectual and emotional impact that extends beyond the small screen: the web browser, the home TV (even very large ones), the standard cinema screen – even IMAX – will not approach the immersive nature of future cinema. It is an experience undergoing technological and context evolution, and it’s audiences will change as the technology and content evolves – it will be driven by clever, sharp content that introduces new ways of looking at things. Scientific knowledge should be foremost amongst this.