The picture above may look like a scene from a futuristic movie, but rest assured you are looking at a human from planet Earth in the year 2016. The product you see attached to the young lady’s face is called Oculus Rift. This device is a virtual reality headset and was first introduced back in 2012 as a Kickstarter campaign. It was successfully funded by the public and the company pushed forward with their plans for the device.
The device itself is a great leap in technological development. The screen gives both eyes an image extending to your peripheral vision. On the outside of that helmet-like enclosure are various sensors and cameras that allow the device to sense head movement and objects in its surrounding. As you move your head from left to right, up and down, the image you see adjusts accordingly. The vision for virtual reality is to one day have every person own a VR headset like they own a smartphone or a TV. You would be able to play inside a video game, take a tour of the jungle, and interact with other users all while remaining safe in your home!
With virtual reality picking up steam, Oculus raised more money and was eventually bought by Facebook for $1.6 billion. With Facebook’s checking account on tap, Oculus is leading the way in virtual reality development. The topic has become so big that Microsoft, Samsung, HTC and Google have all publicly announced their own participation and development in the field. It is rumored Apple is working on something as well.
The original concept was focused towards gamers, but developers are seeing potential uses in healthcare, manufacturing environments, and especially office buildings. It is only a matter of time before we begin to join our office meetings or sales presentations virtually! Imagine being able to put on a VR headset and immediately transport into a virtual conference room for that all-important meeting.
We believe virtual reality will play a very important role in the future when it comes to telecommuting and teleconferencing. During its first year or two in public distribution, developers will need to tweak their software. Hardware manufacturers will put out new versions that are “harder, better, faster, stronger”. Nonetheless, VR teleconferencing and telecommuting will one day become a normal thing.
Are you an early owner of a VR headset? Send us your thoughts and let us know what your experience has been so far!
- Author: Gabriel Castro