How VR is Revolutionizing Industries in Unthinkable Ways
Over the past decade, technology has given birth to striking ways that have changed the way we work, live, travel, socialize and play, and has now taken it a notch higher by introducing Virtual Reality into the mix – thus revolutionizing our experience of the immediate world around us.
The digital lens is no longer confined to web surfing via a computer screen and audio-video interfaces; it now promises an immersive and interactive experience that engages our sense of vision, touch, hearing, smell and even taste to bring alive the artificial world around us.
What is Virtual Reality (VR)?
Virtual reality is essentially a computer technology that generates a three-dimensional simulated environment that can be explored and manipulated by the user. Technically, the phrase is made up of two words – ‘virtual’ meaning near or near enough, and ‘reality’ meaning all that we experience as human beings through the umbrella of the five senses. VR though, makes it possible for the user to experience a host of other senses, and an alternate reality couched in the desired place and time. So if you want to fly like Superman or get transported to the enchanting Harry Potter universe, a VR-headset can do the trick!
Lest you think this is a fad or just a teenager’s fancy, we’re here to tell you that VR, with its packaging of interactive storytelling, constant reinvention, and multipurpose application, is actually quite mainstream. In fact, statistics project a whopping $38B global VR revenue by 2020, up from $1.8B in 2016. Think architecture, sports, or entertainment, VR has been making waves in a variety of industries, revivifying them at their core.
Here are the top three industries that are already riding the VR wave and continue to spell more constructive changes for the future.
One of the earliest adopters of VR and among the most popular forms of entertainment — the gaming industry, which came about in the 1980s and has been churning out games backed by top-notch graphics and edge-of-seat-storytelling — continues to further consolidate its hold on the market by letting the VR breakthrough work to its advantage. Consequently, the gaming experience is now more real and sophisticated.
Sony’s PS4 VR was the first to be released in the VR gaming market, heralding the VR era and thereby leading to an exponential surge in VR-based game creation. For instance, gaming consoles like Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation are getting a complete overhaul, with VR equivalents being launched in the market. Price constraints and consumer demands are also being looked into by gaming companies, with the aim of making these gaming sets accessible by even the average Joe.
After all, if a staggering success like Olwchemy Labs’ Job-Stimulator (acquired by Google), the million-dollar generator game of 2016, is anything to go by, the proof is definitely in the pudding.
One of the biggest problems most people face when property-hunting is understanding the building layout. While it is true that customers are shown an extensive number of photos, videos, and blueprints to help them understand the layout of the house, often these, too, can fall short. What we get are mere two-dimensional representations of the house, leaving the experience underwhelming, in turn holding us back from sealing the purchase. Since buying a house is a one-time investment that can drain away a chunk of our finances at one go, we do deserve more. This is where VR steps in.
Virtual Reality gives us the opportunity to see the house for ourselves, while we walk through the hallway, the kitchen, and the bedrooms and imagine home-designing ideas. We can peek at the corners, walk through the neighborhood and see the lawns and driveways. In short, with the VR-induced sense of presence, we can virtually experience what it would be like living in the house, helping us decide if we really want to go ahead and invest all that money in that property.
What’s more, a VR-backed property inspection is possible even when you’re in the middle of an important office meeting or business lunch, cutting through the often time-consuming, laborious process of visiting the site. You save on money and time, and get to truly have a sensory experience of your dream house. What more can you ask for?
Travel and Tourism
With the boom in internet marketing and advertising, word-of-mouth and online reviews for hotels and Airbnbs have become the norm for tourists scouting for the perfect holiday spot. But what happens when even these individual reviews fail to stir up your interest? Or worse still, the actual tourist experience turns out to be a high-on-marketing but a low-on-quality affair? All the reviews and opinions are subjective and vary based on the experiences of different people — someone may find a little country town fascinating while someone else may find the town to be monotonous and mundane.
There is a way to cut through subjective hotel reviews and ensure you’re putting your money where it matters – and that can happen through VR. With VR by your side, you can ensure that your hotel rentals and preferred destinations are truly customized to your tastes, budget and overall travel goals. From hotel interiors to its promised amenities to the surrounding areas, you get to choose the right fit for your travel needs.
Not a tourist but a tourism service provider? With the rise of companies like Airbnb, HomeAway, and other similar hospitality sectors, you can fuel your business by simply including VR in your rental service and provide close to real demonstrations to potential tourists looking for unique vacation experiences.
Virtual Reality is no longer a dream; with a multipurpose immersive experience, it has become more integrated into today’s world. Not only will VR help expand business and economies and lead to new discoveries, but it will also ensure that people spend their precious money in the right places and services, something that remains grossly under-realized in our current traditional 2D reality.