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Santa Monica is at the center of a tech revolution. Hundreds of startups are based in the city, part of the Westside of L.A. County that has been dubbed “Silicon Beach.”

Our Tech Tuesday feature will introduce you to some of the cutting-edge tech startups cropping up in our back yard.

This week, we chatted with Alex Rosenfeld, CEO and founder of Vrideo, a Santa Monica-based startup integrating virtual reality and video technology.

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I’d like to see the city be a little more supportive of new construction, both for housing and office space, to alleviate rising rents. We’d love to keep the company in Santa Monica from here on out, but as a startup, we need to stay mindful of costs both for our company and our employees.
[/pullquote]What does your company do?

We’re the world’s most fully built out immersive video platform, a suite of products that allows consumers to discover and stream immersive video across the web, mobile devices, and VR headsets.

How did you come up with the idea?

Back in 2013, I had an opportunity to try some of the early prototypes of the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset and was immediately converted. Whereas most folks were focused on virtual reality as a video gaming technology at that point, I believed that virtual reality could also represent the next big step in the evolution of video.

Why did your company locate to Santa Monica?

I was based in Boston when I made the decision to pursue the idea that became Vrideo, and from the get-go LA seemed to be the obvious place to establish this business. Oculus, which had sparked the rebirth of VR, was headquartered right in Orange County, and so much of the broader online video ecosystem is centered here in L.A. The decision was made even easier by the fact that my co-founder and our CTO, Kuangwei Hwang, was already living out here.

What’s the biggest challenge your company is facing?

We’re in the very early days of immersive video, and an incredibly exciting opportunity exists right now for content creators to invent the language of what’s effectively an entirely new medium.  A big part of our efforts these days is proselytizing immersive video to talented content creators and established media companies.

What could the city of Santa Monica do to help your company thrive?

I’d like to see the city be a little more supportive of new construction, both for housing and office space, to alleviate rising rents.  We’d love to keep the company in Santa Monica from here on out, but as a startup, we need to stay mindful of costs both for our company and our employees.

Where do you see your company in a year?

The next year is widely expected to be the advent of consumer virtual reality, with several major technology companies, including Oculus (which is now owned by Facebook), set to launch their headsets in late 2015 and early 2016.  As the space gains popular awareness, we hope to continue to establish ourselves as one of the go-to destinations for compelling immersive content.