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virtual reality (VR) holiday parties
Lifestyle, Live events

How to host a Holiday/Any Day AR/VR Party

I guess we are a little late to the party with this one, though the Chinese New Year is not far off and then there’s #VRValentinesDay…

So here it is. To help you prepare for any and all upcoming celebrations, The Glimpse Group (of which Foretell Reality is a subsidiary) has created a video guide to the perfect digitally distanced Holiday/Any Day party.

Though each experience was unique, the underlying engine that powered the social VR experiences was developed by Foretell Reality. From authentication to avatar selection to room assignment to in-room interactions, Foretell Reality provides a consistent, responsive multi-user experience.

Just as we worked with our colleagues to make these celebrations memorable, we work with partners to realize their goals in areas including Therapy and Support, Soft Skills Development, and Corporate Collaboration.

Interested in a demo? Click here.

virtual reality (VR) job fair
Live events

Rethinking the Virtual Job Fair

In times of economic uncertainty and large scale unemployment, job fairs provide an opportunity for large numbers of job seekers to identify employers who are hiring in one convenient location. Given recent circumstances, we are now seeing a rise in virtual job fairs, aiming to connect job seekers with prospective employers purely online. Virtual job fairs can take different forms ranging from a simple list of employers websites to live video presentations to scheduled one on one sessions.

While virtual job fairs serve a necessary purpose, they lack the hustle and bustle of an in-person event in which employers and job seekers can meet face-to-face for interviews, informative sessions, and assessments. Casual networking is particularly challenging given the limitations of current online tools like video and chat. Not surprisingly, attendees often describe the virtual job fair experience as frustrating and disjointed.

Virtual Reality (VR) presents an opportunity not only to improve the virtual job fair experience but also to redesign it from the ground up. Why meet in a conference hall behind a booth or table when employers can showcase a fully immersive version of their office as a way to highlight their company’s culture? Why just share a job description when you can have prospective employees engage with a simulation of the actual job? Why attempt to network across a video screen when VR provides an experience where dozens of people can connect with one another in an open, 3D environment? VR opens the door for creativity when it comes to recruitment and also provides job seekers unexpected benefits like anonymity if desired.

As with other applications, VR provides the closest experience to meeting in person of any technology available. Personalized avatars allow for subtle, nonverbal communication like gestures, directional gazing, and movements within 3D space. These types of interactions in a distraction-free, focused environment allow applicants and employers to conduct meaningful interviews and informative sessions in a way that closest replicates a real job fair.

Like other live events, VR presents an opportunity to explore new paradigms for remote events where the technology can not only replicate but push beyond the experience as it is today.

virtual reality (VR) live events
Live events

Limitless: Live Events in VR

In 2019, live events ranging from conferences to concerts to sporting events generated tens of billions of dollars in ticket revenue. With recent losses exceeding 90%, the live events industry must answer two critical questions. How do you put on a live event without any attendees and how do you generate revenue without ticket sales?

In the tech industry, where direct losses exceed $1 billion alone, live conferences provide a forum for learning, networking, promotion, and collaboration but that is all predicated on everyone being in the same physical space at the same time. So how can event holders recreate the feeling and function of being at a live event safely and without the need to travel?

Virtual Reality (VR) offers the closest experience to being in person of any technology or medium. Many organizations have been embracing VR for live entertainment for years. The NBA streamed it’s first live game in VR back in 2015 and Oculus Venues streamed its first live concert back in 2018. More recent examples include the largest VR music and arts festival, Lost Horizon, which is set to take place this summer with over 50 performers and 4 stages.

Though the entertainment industry may have been the first group to embrace VR for live events, recent circumstances have forced all live event promoters to strongly consider VR in lieu of in person gatherings. HTC and the IEEE both held VR-only conferences this year and while technology companies may currently be leading this trend, other industries are soon to follow as the pandemic continues and travel budgets are cut.

While the move toward conferences and other live events in VR is positive for the health of attendees, the environment, and the organizers bottom line, it also presents a unique opportunity to revisit the live event experience from the ground up.

While VR can replicate being in familiar venues such as arenas, presentation halls, or trade floors, it can also bring attendees into fantastical environments to participate in new types of interactions and experiences not possible in the real world. We don’t need stadiums or conference centers to hold a virtual audience. We are in new uncharted territory with limitless possibilities. Performers and speakers can be on top of clouds, in the International Space Station, or appear larger than life in front of 12 million fans. Presenters can take an audience on a curated, immersive journey of their product or service and those in attendance can take on any form or appearance.

As evidence of the move toward VR for live events, tech giant Apple recently purchased NextVR, a platform known for producing immersive experiences in sports, music, and entertainment. Apple hopes to incorporate the platform into its music streaming subscription service and its growing video streaming platform, offering subscribers the option to attend concerts or live events virtually. Forget the streaming wars that seem to be all the focus lately, the new frontier is VR for live events.

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