VR For Virtual Events: Can The Barriers Be Broken?
Immersing yourself in a simulated world, far from reality, is always fun. And that’s why virtual reality is gaining momentum these days! Its applications and possibilities are endless. VR expands its scope beyond gaming and provides functions in various fields. From business, education, and entertainment to fitness, VR is being used in almost every industry.
Virtual reality is a computer-generated simulation that allows users to interact with an artificial 3D environment. Think of it as closing your eyes and dreaming. VR is similar in that once the headset is turned on, people are instantly transported to an entirely fictional world that feels incredibly real.
Using VR for virtual events can be a complete game changer. Audiences are increasingly tired of 2D digital experiences. They miss the level of interaction that in-person events allow. Bringing this exciting technology into the lives of attendees circumvents many of the challenges that virtual events present. It’s an immersive, highly interactive, distraction-free experience. This tricks the brain into believing the 3D experience is real and alleviates many of the problems associated with classic virtual experiences.
Virtual reality means that events no longer have to be limited to old forms, whether a venue or a virtual event platform. It’s a safe, exciting, and cost-effective alternative (in some ways). This may very well represent the next “new normal” for the industry.
VR for virtual events: Can barriers be broken?
Of course, no conversation about VR for virtual events, or VR in general, would be complete without mentioning obstacles. The biggest of all is cost – the technology is really expensive. If every attendee needs a headset to join the experience, it can end up being a lot of money.
While it’s possible to connect to many VR collaboration tools from a computer, if companies want to get the most out of VR, they need to provide a headset for every employee expected to participate.
But there is a silver lining! While the cost of purchasing a VR headset for each attendee or employee can be outrageous, things start to look better when we consider the money we’re not spending on planning events with this technology. Virtual experiences have already shown that travel, accommodation, and food cease to be a problem. Looking at the bottom line, the costs previously associated with live events can now be replaced by the costs of VR technology – not to mention the reduced impact we would have on the environment as an industry.
VR for virtual events can be a game-changer
Virtual reality means that events no longer have to be limited to old forms, whether a venue or a virtual event platform. It’s a safe, exciting, and cost-effective alternative (in some ways) that may very well represent the next “new normal” for the industry.
In a world where businesses aspire to focus more on showing than telling, VR is the perfect tool for organizers to create immersive and educational experiences for attendees. Instead of keynote pontifications and dull PowerPoint presentations, organizers can easily bring a subject alive through a VR experience. For instance, learning about a new and innovative piece of medical equipment is so much more impactful if you can ‘watch’ it is used in surgery rather than just hear it being described.
Challenges in using VR for virtual events – and how to solve them
As you can see, VR has played a significant role in virtual events across industries, but some organizers are still hesitant to adopt this innovative technology for their events. Here’s how to tackle some of the challenges VR brings.
Keeping costs low
While the technology required to produce VR and allow your fans to access your videos may seem daunting, the good news is that VR technology is getting better and cheaper. Facebook’s $299 Oculus Quest 2 headset has already significantly reduced the entry-level price of a VR device. And with a $15 price tag, Google Cardboard allows users to experience VR with just a smartphone.
Accessible to everyone
VR technology provides a way for viewers to access new experiences, but it still has a long way to go in terms of accessibility. This high-performance technology is not suitable for users living in low-connectivity areas. But this can easily be solved by partnering with venues that have the necessary bandwidth and power or opting to use more affordable technology like smartphones.
Sharing is Caring
Unlike the ‘Ready, Player One’ world, users cannot enter virtual reality with anyone else at the moment – at least for now. However, if you have the budget, you can create group VR experiences. For example, when Jaguar launched its I-PACE electric concept car, it was through shared virtual reality. Groups of participants sat together at round tables with helmets and a virtual ride in the driver’s seat. They could see the hand controllers of the participants on the right and left and hear everyone else’s comments and reactions, which added to the feeling of a group experience.
Like any technology, VR is constantly changing and evolving, so organizers using this technology must be equally avant-garde in their creativity in using it. While brands and the events they host can serve as inspiration, be sure to think about how you can use this to further your event’s goals.
Content writer with a passion to write for a variety of niches to broaden my horizon as a professional writer.