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October Events in VR
Industry News, Other

Five Events in October Pushing VR Forward (and the month’s not over yet)

  1. Accenture announces it will purchase 60,000 VR headsets to train new hires.

Why it Matters: More demand for hardware will create more competition among headset manufacturers which will advance innovation.

2. HTC announces release of new immersive glasses for relaxation.

Why it Matters: More affordably priced headsets in the marketplace targeted at specific consumer applications like relaxation will increase adoption among consumers.

3. Facebook announces it will hire 10,000 new employees in Europe focused on building out metaverse.

Why it Matters: With 10,000 employees in the U.S. already working on AR and VR, this is a clear indication that the largest social media company in the world is going all in on a 3D future globally.

4. Magic Leap raises another $500m and reveals Magic Leap 2.

Why it Matters: Having now raised a total of $3.5b, it shows that large investors see augmented and virtual reality as a long term play.

5. Paris Hilton headlines the inaugural Metaverse Festival and embraces the decentralized world of blockchain, Decentraland, and Genies.

Why it Matters: Alternative social VR platforms show that Mark Zuckerburg’s metaverse isn’t the only game in town meaning more choices for consumers, more innovation, and less centralized control.

Other

Discovering Diversion, Connection, and Wellbeing inside VR

In light of the recent pandemic, stay at home orders are causing people to feel confined, isolated, and anxious. For WIRED’s Chelsea Leah, VR (Virtual Reality) became an unexpected tool for staying active and relieving stress during this period. Through meditation, exploration, socializing, and movement, she describes how she overcame her initial skepticism to make VR part of her regular routine. Here are some of the applications she discovered:

Meditation: Reef migration, as the name suggests, is an underwater VR environment in which one can explore a coral reef and interact with marine life. 

The graphics are wonderful, the sounds are peaceful, and there’s enough passive action to keep my brain entertained. The best part? I’m not wet or cold, and I don’t need to go up for air”

Exploration: Google’s VR version of Google Earth allows anyone who may feel homesick to revisit places from their childhood through their VR headsets. 

“Simply being able to see these places in VR helped me cope with the nostalgia and longing to go somewhere”.

Socializing: Rec Room is a social space where people from all over the world can play games and do other activities together.

“I recognize the subtle head and arm movements of my individual friends, making it feel as though we truly are in the same room together.” 

Movement: Beat Saber challenges players to physically slash through rapidly approaching music blocks with a virtual lightsaber. 

anything that mixes pop music with light sabers is destined for success.”

The Foretell Reality platform leverages the strengths of VR for professional use cases including tools and environments for therapy and support, soft skills training, and business collaboration. 

Other, Soft Skills

Recruitment and Hiring Through Virtual Reality (VR)

Online interviews are now the standard for job hiring. They are of course, not without their own challenges. From technical glitches, lack of body language cues, difficulty maintaining eye contact, and judgements on camera position and background, online video interviews can be uncomfortable and challenging.

One way to improve this experience would be to shift it to Virtual Reality (VR). VR touts many benefits from enhancing eye contact and body language to allowing both parties to grasp the context of questions and fit better. An interview is an opportunity for both the interviewer and interviewee to learn more about one another. A prospective employee can tour the office workspace virtually and view the company culture firsthand.

VR allows the candidate to interact with virtual team members in an immersive environment, perhaps even working through simulations to demonstrate their expertise. VR also masks the physical appearance of a candidate, removing stigma and bias from the interview process and also relieving a source of stress for the candidate who now does not have to concentrate on their appearance or physical location. VR also allows for all participants to be better focused and attentive.

Though video and audio may be the standard at the moment for interviewing, forward thinking companies should consider VR which promises a much more immersive, unbiased, and lifelike alternative to find the best candidates.

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