Digital Transformation Technology and Innovation User Experience

Where will Virtual Reality lead us ?

From movies to medicine and video games and the industry, Virtual Reality is growing exponentially. In the US, this is the entertainment industry that is about to be swamped.

The necessary technology to our immersion in virtual worlds all exist today. But what shall we do with it?

An old fantasy

One of the most legendary films about virtual reality is undoubtedly Total Recall, released in 1990 and directed by Paul Verhoeven . In a future where humanity has colonized Mars, the Rekall company offers to implant fake memories in his clients memory. When Douglas Quaid, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger , tries the experience, it goes wrong. From that moment on, the boundaries between the real world and memory implanted memories became blurry. This adaptation of the story We Can Remember It for You Wholesale of Philip K. Dick. summarizes our primary anxiety facing the virtual reality and : if this one took control over reality that you can’t always see through rose-coloured glasses ?

Universes connected to all the senses

While 2D images included only sight and hearing, the promise of virtual reality is on the contrary to provide an experience for all your senses. The 360 degrees universe immersion sensation is what the virtual reality brought to the world of the visual. But some design companies do not stop and are going further.

Today virtual reality puts into play not only the view but allows soliciting other senses such as touch. The Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive or the Project Morpheus, require arms usage, but at the moment nothing new compared to a conventional game console.

While the Oculus Rift, which was released in January 2016, has developed the characteristics of his helmet and is offering the ability to use his hands to evolve in the environment in which is immersed the user.

Tesla’s company specializes in engine construction, has created Tesla Suit and develops virtual reality clothing covering the whole body, with sensors. Tesla Suit is compatible with the Oculus Rift and other virtual reality or augmented objects such as Google Glasses. The suit captures the stimuli sent when using a virtual reality application. The amusement park The Void, which will be launched in the US in Utah near Salt Lake City, has developed its own suit, Rapture (consisting of a helmet, gloves and jacket).

Crossing spaces

Today Virtual Reality allows for example to remotely control a construction site. Ericsson, the telecoms equipment manufacturer, introduced in March 2015 a device for viewing the inside of an excavation through a virtual reality helmet.021115-N-5862D-001 Aboard Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola (Nov. 15, 2002) -- Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Tim Sudduth, from Vashowish, Wash., demonstrates the Virtual Reality (VR) parachute trainer, while Aviation Survival Equipmentman 1st Class, Jackie Hilles, from Ekland, Penn., controls the program from a computer console. Students wear the VR glasses while suspended in a parachute harness, and then learn to control their movements through a series of computer-simulated scenarios. The computer receives signals from the student as they pull on the risers that control the parachute. The VR trainer also teaches aircrew personnel how to handle a parachute in different weather conditions and during possible equipment malfunctions. Navy and Marine Corps aviators receive state of the art training at the Naval Survival Training Institute. U.S. Navy photo by Chief PhotographerÕs Mate Chris Desmond. (RELEASED)

Is that a reason to think that Virtual Reality can be scary and can be reduced to this?

HoneyVR the company, appealed to artists of Computergenerative imaginary to create a virtual reality application called “Times traveler”, allowing to immerse the user in the most important events in history. Can we go further? The answer is yes. Sony is working with Jet propulsion laboratory and NASA to develop an application to recreate the experience to evolve on the surface of Mars.

And film in all this? Virtual reality gradually permeates the world of filmmaking. Go Pro,  NextVR, Samsung and Nokia recently launched their virtual reality camera. The BBC has developed a program to adapt the format of its programs to virtual reality.

In terms of communication, Facebook announced that virtual reality would be the next stage of brand development and the future of video. So is the future already in virtual reality?

About the author

François Van Laeys

François Van Laeys

Web marketing manager within Softcorner, second hand software market place while following Grenoble Management School Master's in Digital Business Strategy.