8 fields of application for VR other than video games

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Steven L. Kent
@stevenlkent
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Summary

  • 8 application sectors for virtual reality
  • Journalism
  • Education
  • Health care
  • Pornography
  • Religion
  • Entertainment
  • Space exploration
  • Musées

Today, video games are considered the El Dorado by most of the mainstream VR industry. This is the area of ​​application of this new technology which is developing the fastest, and attracting the greatest number of developers. For good reason, VR and complete immersion in a virtual universe clearly represents the logical evolution of video games, fantasized for decades by players around the world. Yet, as a recent study by Greenlight VR demonstrated, gaming is not the primary focus of users. In order to demonstrate the many other uses that virtual reality can have, here is a selection of 8 other fields of application. 



8 application sectors for virtual reality

Journalism

In the face of the crisis in online journalism, news sites are always looking for new ways to grab the reader's attention by adding value to their publications. In this context, several journalists are interested in virtual reality as a new medium.

For example, the New York Times or the Des Moines Register tried to use VR to transport the reader directly to a different place in order to make him feel the atmosphere and reality from a place that could only be described in words or displayed in pictures.

For the same purpose, the USC School of Cinematic Arts created Project Syria. 

Education

A few years ago, when the Oculus Rift was in its infancy, members of the MIT Game Lab created an experiment called VR Can Be Used Likewise in Classrooms to enable to students of visualize certain concepts, particularly in the field of physics.



Health care

According to forecasts by Research and Markets, the market for virtual reality and augmented reality for healthcare will grow by $ 1,9 billion by 2020. There are indeed many revolutionary applications in this field, already finalized or still in development.

For example, researchers at the University of Louisville are using virtual reality to treat anxiety disorders and phobias. Likewise, Stanford University has developed training software for surgeons. As the medical industry becomes more and more digital, VR applications will continue to multiply.

Pornography

As you might expect, it didn't take long for the porn industry to invest heavily in virtual reality. Last March, Pornhub launched a VR channel, featuring videos of people in virtual environments interacting with the user. There are more and more videos of this kind. Thanks to various accessories, such as connected sex toys or haptic feedback accessories, VR sex is gradually getting closer to real sex. To learn more, check out our guide to virtual reality pornography.

Religion

Entertainment

Since 2015, the Oculus Rift has benefited from a Netflix application, allowing users to watch their favorite series in a virtual living room including a sofa, a giant screen, and mood lighting. This is just the start, and audiences are now waiting to see how virtual reality will revolutionize the cinematic experience. VR is the next step for cinema, after 3D and IMAX. Since 1950, the industry has tried to increase the immersion of viewers in films by various means. For example, 4D tries to add sensations in addition to sight and hearing, without however succeeding in erasing the barrier of the screen. For the time being, virtual reality mainly offers an alternative to traditional cinema, for example by offering watch a movie from home by joining other users in a virtual cinema.



Space exploration

Most of us will probably never go to space, even though NASA is currently planning the first trip to Mars. Virtual reality is presented as an alternative. Thus, the American space agency proposes to contemplate the Red Planet in VR thanks to a panoramic camera. It can be an educational tool for students, and offer a direct view of distant planets.


Musées

While virtual reality allows you to explore the future, it also allows you to travel to the past. The British Museum, for example, uses virtual reality to transport users to the Bronze Age. Beyond that, it is technically possible to visit the largest museums in the world through virtual reality. Thus, people who cannot afford to travel can now access culture from their home. The same goes for historical monuments.



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