June 23, 2023
WebXR: The Secret Weapon for Driving Engagement and Sales in Your Marketing Campaigns

This article was written by our CEO Olga Kryvchenko and originally published on Linkedin. To get more biweekly updates about extended reality, subscribe to Olga’s XR Frontiers LinkedIn newsletter.  As the world continues to shift towards a more digital landscape, it’s becoming increasingly important for businesses to embrace new technologies in order to reach their audiences. One such technology is WebXR, which can be a powerful tool for marketing campaigns. In this article, we’ll explore why WebXR is good for marketing campaigns, as well as some of the limitations and potential issues that businesses should be aware of when implementing this technology. First, it’s important to understand what WebXR is. WebXR is an open standard for creating immersive experiences on the web, using technologies such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). This means that users can access these experiences using just a web browser, without the need for additional software or hardware. So why is WebXR good for marketing campaigns? There are a few reasons: Engaging experiences: WebXR can create immersive experiences that are more engaging than traditional marketing methods. By allowing users to interact with a brand in a more tactile way, businesses can create more meaningful connections with their audience. Reach: Because WebXR experiences can be accessed through a web browser, they have the potential to reach a wide audience. This is particularly important in today’s global market, where businesses need to be able to reach customers around the world. Novelty: WebXR is still a relatively new technology, which means that it has a novelty factor that can make marketing campaigns stand out. By using WebXR, businesses can create unique experiences that capture the attention of their target audience. However, there are also some limitations and potential issues that businesses should be aware of when implementing WebXR into their marketing campaigns. Here are some key considerations: Performance: WebXR experiences can require a lot of processing power and memory, which can lead to performance issues on some devices. Businesses need to ensure that their experiences are optimized for performance and can be accessed on a range of devices. User Experience: As with any new technology, WebXR experiences can be difficult for some users to understand or navigate. This means that businesses need to carefully design their experiences with user experience in mind, and provide clear instructions or guidance where necessary. Accessibility: While WebXR experiences can be accessed on a range of devices, they may not be accessible to users with certain disabilities. Businesses need to ensure that their experiences are designed with accessibility in mind, and provide alternative options where necessary. Security: WebXR experiences are accessed through a web browser, which can pose potential security risks if not properly secured. Businesses need to ensure that their experiences are designed with security in mind, and use secure protocols to protect user data. Compatibility: WebXR is still a relatively new technology, which means that it may not be compatible with all browsers or devices. Businesses need to ensure that their experiences are compatible with a range of devices and browsers, or risk limiting their reach. Cost: Creating high-quality WebXR experiences can be expensive, and may require specialized skills or software. Businesses need to carefully consider the costs associated with creating WebXR experiences, and whether the benefits justify the investment. These are just a few examples of successful WebXR apps. As the technology continues to evolve, we can expect to see more innovative and engaging experiences that drive engagement and business success. “Sneaker Try-On” by Shopify: This WebXR experience allows customers to virtually try on sneakers in augmented reality. By using their smartphone’s camera, customers can see how the sneakers would look on their feet before making a purchase. The app has been successful in driving engagement and sales for Shopify’s clients. “The Wild Immersion” by The Wild Immersion: This WebXR experience is an immersive wildlife documentary that transports users to different habitats around the world. The experience has been successful in raising awareness about conservation efforts and promoting eco-tourism. “Lens Studio” by Snap Inc.: This WebXR experience allows users to create their own augmented reality filters for Snapchat. The app has been successful in driving engagement and user-generated content on the Snapchat platform. “Glasses Fitting App” by Qualium Systems: This WebXR experience allows users to try on virtual glasses in augmented reality. By using their smartphone’s camera, users can see how the glasses would look on their face before making a purchase. The app has been successful in improving the user experience for customers and driving sales for glasses retailers. In conclusion, WebXR can be a powerful tool for businesses looking to create engaging and immersive experiences for their customers. However, it’s important to carefully consider the limitations and potential issues of WebXR, including performance, user experience, accessibility, security, compatibility, and cost. By designing experiences with these considerations in mind, businesses can create effective and successful WebXR campaigns that reach their target audience and drive business growth. Image: Freepik

June 22, 2023
Sailing the Seas of XR Development: Five Strategies for Maximizing Efficiency on a Budget

This article was written by our CEO Olga Kryvchenko and originally published on Linkedin. To get more biweekly updates about extended reality, subscribe to Olga’s XR Frontiers LinkedIn newsletter.  Embarking on an Extended Reality (XR) development journey is like setting sail on an exciting voyage into the future. However, it’s crucial to understand what you’re getting into financially before you start. When it comes to the costs, there’s more to it than meets the eye. Hardware is your first mate in this journey. You need high-performing computers, VR headsets, AR glasses, and a host of other devices for testing and development. Depending on the size of the beast you’re taming (i.e., the complexity of your project), the hardware can eat up a good chunk of your budget. Then there’s the software crew. You need to equip your ship with various development tools, game engines like Unity or Unreal Engine, and other software for designing, coding, and testing your XR application. Don’t forget to factor in any licensing fees you might encounter along the way. Let’s not forget the human element. Your crew, including designers, developers, project managers, testers, and others, need to be compensated for their efforts. Depending on the technical skills your project requires, personnel costs can climb. Finally, the unexpected expenses – the pirates of your budget voyage. These can include training for your team, travel expenses for meetings, the cost of permissions or certifications, and any other surprises that might pop up during the development journey. But remember, being cost-efficient in XR development isn’t just about trimming the fat. It’s about making smart decisions to use your resources effectively and deliver a top-notch XR application. Knowing these costs allows you to strategically allocate resources, make well-informed decisions, and ultimately increase your treasure trove – the return on investment in your XR projects. Now, let’s talk strategy. How do you get the most bang for your buck in your XR development journey? The Lean Approach: This method is all about minimizing waste – whether that’s time, resources, or effort – and focusing on delivering maximum value. In the world of XR, this could mean creating a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) first with only the essential features, and then improving based on user feedback. Existing Tools and Platforms: Why reinvent the wheel when you can stand on the shoulders of giants? There are several XR development tools available that can help reduce costs. Plus, many of these platforms offer tutorials and community support, which can speed up development and cut down training costs. Outsourcing vs. In-house Development: Think about your project’s complexity and your team’s skills. Would outsourcing tasks or even the entire process be more cost-effective? Or would developing in-house save more pennies? Weigh your options carefully. Agile Development Principles: Agile is all about flexibility, iteration, and continual improvement. This approach allows teams to quickly adapt to changes, learn from each cycle, and reduces the risk of expensive mistakes or unnecessary features. Prioritizing Features: Not every feature needs to be in the first release of your app. Prioritize based on user needs and business goals. Start with an MVP and add more features in subsequent updates based on user feedback. Setting sail in the sea of budget XR development isn’t always smooth sailing. It’s filled with potential pitfalls. But knowing these challenges and strategies to avoid them can be the difference between sinking and sailing to success. Common mistakes include underestimating costs and time, neglecting user testing, and trying to include too many features at once. Make sure you invest time in planning, include user testing at various stages, and prioritize your features to avoid these blunders. And remember, while being cost-efficient is important, don’t sacrifice quality. A poorly executed XR app can sink your reputation. Invest in good design, thorough testing, and continuous refinement based on user feedback. Also, consider this: when you’re on a tight budget, it can be tempting to cut corners. However, it’s crucial to maintain the balance between cost-cutting and producing a high-quality, engaging XR experience. It’s like maintaining the balance of your ship in stormy seas – you need to manage your resources wisely while ensuring your XR app is an experience users will love. As we drop anchor on this guide, it’s clear that embarking on an Extended Reality (XR) development journey can be an exciting, yet challenging adventure, especially when budget constraints are part of the equation. However, with a clear understanding of the costs involved, the adoption of cost-efficient strategies, and an unwavering commitment to quality, successful XR development is entirely achievable even within a tight budget. Remember, it’s not just about cutting costs, but smartly allocating resources and leveraging existing tools and methodologies. It’s about being lean and agile, prioritizing effectively, and being wise in choosing between outsourcing and in-house development. But most importantly, it’s about maintaining a balance – a balance between cost-cutting and quality, between innovative features and user needs, and between your ambitious vision and the realities of the development process. In the end, the seas of XR development may be unpredictable, but with careful planning, strategic decision-making, and a learning mindset, you’re well-equipped to navigate these waters successfully. So here’s to your upcoming XR journey – may it be filled with innovation, efficiency, and a whole lot of success. Image: Freepik

June 21, 2023
Digitally Preserving and Exploring the Past: The Intersection of XR and Archaeology in Cultural Heritage Preservation

This article was written by our CEO Olga Kryvchenko and originally published on Linkedin. To get more biweekly updates about extended reality, subscribe to Olga’s XR Frontiers LinkedIn newsletter.  Hello, dear readers! Today, we’re delving into an exciting synergy of technology and history, where we explore how Extended Reality (XR) is shaping the field of archaeology. Cultural heritage—the timeless tapestry of our collective past—is invaluable. It connects us to our ancestors and provides context for our present. However, preserving this cultural heritage can be an uphill battle. The wear of time is unrelenting—ancient relics decay and centuries-old knowledge can fade into obscurity. But XR, a concept you’re undoubtedly familiar with, is stepping onto the scene as a game-changer. Imagine unearthing relics without disturbing the soil, or even walking through ancient cities right from your living room. In this journey, we’ll explore the powerful alliance of XR and archaeology, reshaping how we preserve and interact with our rich cultural heritage. Ready to explore the past through a futuristic lens? Let’s dive in! And here we are at the crossroads of past and future. To some, archaeology may seem like a discipline deeply rooted in the past, while XR symbolizes a step into the future. But when these two converge, magic happens! Through XR, archaeologists gain a transformative toolkit. They can virtually excavate sites without causing physical disturbance, create interactive 3D models of artifacts for further study, and even rebuild ancient structures in a digital environment. Imagine seeing the world as our ancestors did, reconstructed right before our eyes—it’s like a sci-fi movie, but it’s reality! For instance, let’s take a peek at a project that exemplifies this synergy of technology and history. The ancient city of Palmyra, much of which was tragically destroyed in recent conflicts, has been digitally revived. Using XR, archaeologists and historians have painstakingly recreated Palmyra’s monumental arches and colonnades. Not only does this serve as a timeless record, but it also allows anyone, anywhere to virtually explore this iconic city. This is just the tip of the iceberg. The harmonious marriage of XR and archaeology is opening a whole new world of possibilities in researching, documenting, and preserving our shared history. The beautiful dance of XR and archaeology isn’t just a spectacle—it has tangible benefits that are truly game-changing. From the lab to the field, the living room to the classroom, this exciting fusion is enhancing our interaction with the past in ways we could only dream of before. Let’s start by discussing research. Through XR, archaeologists can manipulate 3D models of artifacts or archaeological sites with ease, exploring them from all angles without fear of damaging precious finds. They can collaborate remotely with peers across the globe, working together on a shared digital platform, which wasn’t feasible in traditional methods. On the public engagement front, XR is a superstar. We’ve all dreamed of time travel, haven’t we? XR allows anyone with a headset or even a smartphone to wander through ancient cities, experience historic events, or hold digital replicas of artifacts. It’s an immersive, interactive journey through time—history like you’ve never experienced before! This not only fosters a deeper understanding of our shared heritage but also sparks curiosity and inspires passion for history among younger generations. Moreover, XR encourages open access in archaeology. By digitizing findings and sharing them online, we’re effectively creating a global digital museum, accessible to anyone, anywhere. This democratizes knowledge, allowing everyone to engage with and learn from our collective past. The intersection of XR and archaeology is essentially a bridge—a bridge that connects us to our past in an accessible, interactive, and exciting way. It’s like putting on a pair of magic glasses that let you see and touch history. But as with all magic, there are challenges to face. As enthralling as this fusion of XR and archaeology might be, it’s not without its hurdles. But, of course, no path to progress is completely obstacle-free, right? Accuracy is one such challenge. How can we ensure the digital models and virtual environments we create accurately represent the artifacts or sites they’re based on? After all, a misinterpreted detail or misplaced structure can skew historical understanding. Accessibility is another concern. XR technology, as advanced as it is, isn’t universally available or affordable. And while creating a global digital museum is a wonderful idea, it’s of little use if it’s only accessible to a privileged few. Then comes the question of ethics. What happens when we digitally recreate sites or artifacts sacred to certain cultures? How can we ensure respect and appropriateness while bringing history to the masses? Now, these challenges may seem daunting, but they’re not insurmountable. Advancements in scanning and modeling technologies are improving the accuracy of our digital replicas. Tech companies, governments, and NGOs are working tirelessly to make XR technology more affordable and accessible. As for ethics, ongoing dialogues and collaborations with local communities and cultural institutions are key to ensuring cultural sensitivity and respect. In essence, we’re standing at a thrilling juncture, where technology meets history, creating endless possibilities. However, to truly unlock XR’s potential in archaeology, we need to work collectively—researchers, technologists, policymakers, and society at large—to overcome these challenges. It’s a thrilling endeavor, and we’re all part of the story! Alright, let’s see the magic of XR in archaeology with some inspiring real-world examples. Each project demonstrates how this technology is already illuminating our understanding and experience of history. Our journey starts in Italy, with the “Pompeii VR” project. This virtual experience breathes life into the ancient city of Pompeii, allowing users to explore the city as it was just before the devastating eruption of Vesuvius. From homes and temples to bustling markets, users can immerse themselves in the everyday life of ancient Rome. Image: Pixabay.

June 21, 2023
Dining in Virtual Realm. Rise of AR/VR Restaurants and Cafés

In recent years, the integration of augmented reality and virtual reality has redefined the way we experience restaurants and cafés. The combination of augmented and virtual reality in the restaurant industry has opened up new business opportunities that will be useful to both customers and chefs. Therefore, it is not surprising that VR and AR are becoming one of the most popular technologies today. According to Glowid, there are currently 171 million users of virtual and augmented reality in the world, and 70% of them believe that VR and AR will become profitable for them. So, in this article, we will reveal in more detail the main advantages of virtual and augmented reality in the catering industry and discuss the ways they are used in the example of successful use cases. Augmented Reality in Restaurants: Redefining Dining with Digital Innovation Power of AR: Revolutionizing the Way Restaurants and Cafés Engage Customers Augmented reality offers coffee shops and restaurants such advantages as Strengthening interaction with customers. It has already been proven in many other industries, that AR increases the level of customer interest in the offered product, and the probability that the customer will want to purchase a particular product that has a digital AR copy increases many times. According to Threekit, the level of customer engagement with a product increases by as much as 200% if they try the AR experience associated with it. Read also: The way AR/VR influences retail success  Automation and service facilitation. AR provides experiences that are not only exciting and interesting but also significantly facilitate catering services. For example, a customer can more easily and quickly order a dish through the AR menu, which uses a portable gadget that superimposes a digital double of the dish on a real plate. In addition, AR significantly speeds up the process of customer service and food preparation. Increasing the productivity and working skills of employees. Using AR training, you can quickly and effectively improve the work of waiters and cooks. According to DataProt, 70% of users of augmented reality believe that it can improve their skills. Read also: Boosting Performance and Customer Service: VR Impact on Training in Retail  From Menus to Cooking Guidance: Exploring Augmented Reality in Restaurants The first popular direction of AR in the restaurant industry is augmented reality menu. This is a convenient function for those who want to try a dish for the first time and learn more about it. Instead of seeing only the name, ingredients, and 2D photos, a visitor uses a smartphone to superimpose a digital 3D model of the dish, which the buyer can examine from all angles. This option is provided by the fast food chain Pizza Hut. In this AR menu on a portable smartphone, a virtual chef serves as a guide for the customer and helps to navigate the choice of a dish. While visitors are waiting for their order, they can be entertained by an AR installation that will make the waiting time more exciting and interesting. For example, these experiences are projected directly onto the table, or a user can view them on his smartphone. One of the most famous AR entertainment for restaurant customers is the Le Petit Chef series of comedy sketches, where a little chef tries to cook different dishes. Read also: The Ways AR Redefines Modern Tourism  And well-known pizzeria PizzaExpress released an AR game for smartphones, Doughball. It’s a 60-second game of soccer, only instead of balls, diners play with balls of dough while they wait for their order to be prepared. This AR game was made in honor of the Football World Cup 2018. In addition, augmented reality is also a good assistant for cooks. Like, for example, ChefAR, which not only teaches chefs how to prepare meals correctly but also greatly facilitates the process of preparing a meal. The cook will no longer have to be distracted by a smartphone with a browser and video instructions and spend time looking for the right ingredients. With the help of MR glasses, the cook sees all the visual instructions and instructions in front of him in augmented reality. This program is specifically designed for Microsoft Hololens for home cooks, but similar programs are also suitable for restaurant chefs. Virtual Reality: Next Frontier for Restaurants and Cafés Exploring Advantages of Virtual Reality Restaurants and Cafés In particular, virtual reality provides enterprises with such advantages as An unusual way of attracting an audience. As it was mentioned above, immersive technologies can increase the level of customer interest in a product or institution. According to Forbes, 75% of well-known brands use VR applications to meet the needs of customers. After all, establishments with VR experiences attract more attention from the audience, because they stand out from competitors who have not implemented VR in their operations. An opportunity to evaluate the establishment before the visit and make a decision. In catering business, VR is used for virtual tours, which will allow customers wearing virtual reality glasses to see a preview of the establishment and form their own opinion about it, as well as to decide on the best place in advance. Unique and exciting visit to a restaurant or café. Using virtual reality, you can turn ordinary meetings in a coffee shop into an exciting and interesting experience that is not limited to the four walls of the establishment. Your customers will use VR headsets to eat food in digital reality.  Future of Dining: VR Restaurants and Cafés Transforming the Culinary Landscape To begin with, the client needs to decide in which restaurant he wants to stay. Instead of spending time on the road, he can simply put on VR glasses and see a digital version of your establishment. For example, the Alarina Project company, which organizes travel and selects hotels, developed a VR restaurant tour created in 360º video format. In addition, virtual reality is also used when your guests have already entered the restaurant. To turn an ordinary meal into…

June 21, 2023
The Future of Marketing: How XR Technology is Transforming the Customer Experience

This article was written by our CEO Olga Kryvchenko and originally published on Linkedin. To get more biweekly updates about extended reality, subscribe to Olga’s XR Frontiers LinkedIn newsletter.  Working in the XR industry for about 4 years, I’ve had the opportunity to work with a variety of marketing agencies looking to incorporate XR technologies into their marketing strategies. While these technologies can be incredibly powerful tools for creating immersive, engaging experiences for customers, it’s important to approach them with a clear plan and a solid understanding of what they can do. If you’re considering incorporating XR technology into your marketing strategy, here are a few tips to keep in mind: Understand the technology: Before implementing any XR technology, it’s important to have a solid understanding of what it is, how it works, and what it can do. This will help you choose the right technology for your specific marketing campaign and ensure that it is used in a way that makes sense for your client and their target audience. Set clear goals: When incorporating XR technology into a marketing strategy, it’s important to set clear goals for what you hope to achieve. This might include increasing brand awareness, driving engagement and interaction, or improving the overall customer experience. Having clear goals will help you measure the success of your campaign and make any necessary adjustments along the way. Choose the right platform: There are a variety of different XR platforms available, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to choose the platform that best aligns with your client’s needs and goals, as well as the technical requirements of your campaign. Create engaging content: XR technology can be a powerful tool for creating immersive, engaging experiences for customers. However, in order to be effective, the content you create needs to be high-quality and engaging. This might include creating interactive product demonstrations, immersive brand experiences, or virtual tours of a physical location. Test and iterate: As with any marketing campaign, it’s important to test and iterate your XR strategy to ensure that it is delivering the desired results. This might involve running A/B tests to compare different versions of your XR experience, gathering feedback from users, and making adjustments based on that feedback. Consider accessibility: While XR technology can be a great way to create immersive experiences, it’s important to consider accessibility when designing your campaign. This might include ensuring that the experience is accessible to people with disabilities, as well as making sure that it is optimized for different devices and internet speeds. Stay up-to-date: XR technology is constantly evolving, so it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and developments in the field. This might involve attending conferences, reading industry publications, and staying connected with other professionals in the field. By keeping these tips in mind, you can create powerful, effective XR experiences that drive engagement and improve the overall customer experience. If you’re looking for help getting started with XR technology, feel free to reach out to me for more information! Image: Freepik

VisionPro_Apple
June 14, 2023
VisionPro on the Horizon: Why MR App Development Doesn’t Sleep

Imagine you’re standing at the threshold of Apple’s new XR headset release, eyes keenly following the stock market reactions and your inbox buzzing with LinkedIn updates about Unity’s burgeoning open positions. The anticipation is almost tangible – it’s like the tech industry’s equivalent of awaiting the final season of a blockbuster TV series. But alas, the actual release isn’t due until next year. Does this mean we press pause on developments? Absolutely not! You might wonder, “Why not take a breather?” The reason is straightforward: MR (Mixed Reality) app development waits for no one. If the groundwork is laid properly now, adapting our apps for the VisionPro release later will be as easy as swapping out smartphone cases. The secret weapon here is experience with the Unity engine. Companies fluent in this technology will navigate VisionPro development with an ease and agility akin to a seasoned marathon runner approaching the home stretch. Having experience with ARKit? That’s a bonus akin to having an extra energy gel in that marathon. And there’s more! Early access to VisionOS SDK is like getting the keys to a treasure chest. It offers an exclusive chance to study, tinker, and try out the first elements of emulation. It’s an opportunity to dive in and get your hands on the technology of tomorrow, today. Previous encounters with MR devices like Magic Leap, HTC Vive, Pico 4, and HoloLens 2 also offer invaluable insights. These devices, with their distinct programming languages, offer lessons in MR app development that are as comprehensive as they are diverse. They serve as a practical guide to the symphony of MR tech. When it comes to eye-tracking, gesture control, and voice control, it’s like we’re in a familiar neighborhood. Experience from working on platforms like Meta Oculus and HoloLens 2 instills confidence, despite the anticipation of some subtle differences with the upcoming VisionPro. However, the fundamentals will likely stay the same. So, to all XR enthusiasts out there, keep those VR goggles firmly in place and maintain the momentum of your MR app developments. While Apple’s new XR headset is an enticing frontier, there’s a lot to be accomplished in the meantime. And when VisionPro does eventually launch, you’ll be primed to embrace it with open arms and innovative apps. Image: Apple

June 9, 2023
Boosting Performance and Customer Service: VR Impact on Training in Retail

By harnessing the power of virtual reality, businesses are transforming and enhancing their training programs, equipping employees with the skills they need to succeed in the workplace. Companies use various simulations that recreate real scenarios at work: from a normal dialogue with a buyer to an emergency situation. VR training is already successfully implemented by such retail giants as Walmart, Super Retail Group, Goodwill, IKEA, etc. In this article, we will tell you how virtual reality is used to train retail employees and how VR improves work efficiency. Empowering Retail Staff: Benefits of VR Training Famous brands are increasingly paying attention to VR training for trade employees due to a number of the following advantages: Increasing involvement in the work process. It has been proven that virtual training can increase employees’ concentration on the work process and increase their interest in completing tasks. This is all because, first of all, virtual training is conducted in an immersive environment that maximizes the real workplace. And, secondly, training in VR is an interesting and gamified process that will increase the level of task performance. Reducing training time. By using virtual reality, companies spend significantly less time on preparation and the training process itself. You don’t need to create the necessary conditions on the spot yourself. The necessary realistic scenario is already ready in the VR glasses. Instead of conducting long briefings, an employee wearing virtual reality glasses receives visual prompts and options for the development of events. Thus, the duration of training for employees is reduced from several hours to 25–30 minutes, if not less. Safe and controlled environment. While going through VR training, company employees hone their skills in a safe space where they can make mistakes and learn from them without affecting real customers. The instant feedback provided in VR simulations enables employees to understand their strengths and areas for improvement, leading to continuous skill development. With VR employee training, companies can develop a customer-centric culture, equipping their employees with the necessary skills to deliver exceptional service and create memorable experiences for their customers. Key Focus Areas of VR Training for Employees Welcome to the Future: Enhancing Retail Onboarding with VR Training So, you have hired new employees who need to be familiarized with the workplace. In order to quickly adapt newcomers to the work in your company, employees of the HR department can simply hand over VR glasses with a workplace simulation. It has already been proven that virtual training with visual indicators and text prompts accelerates the acquisition of new skills and the process of adaptation to a new workplace. For example, the famous Swedish brand IKEA, which is known for its XR experiences, introduced virtual training for newcomers during Talent Focus Week a few years ago. During the event, those who want to work at IKEA could find out more information about the company through a cardboard VR headset. They could also choose any department in which they want to work, get to know the team, and learn more about the basic principles of work in the digital space. Read also: Extended Reality Solutions For HR Department  Mastering the Human Touch: VR Soft Skills Training for Retail Employees Through an interactive, immersive experience, VR training enables employees to develop essential communication skills. There are several areas of soft skills training for employees: team management, development of stress resistance, ability to resolve conflicts, development of tolerance for different employees, etc. Thus, it will be easier for the employee to join the team and better understand the working atmosphere. So, Roundtable Learning, a well-known developer of VR training, released another simulator in which an employee learns to be a department head. For example, this simulator contains a scenario where you have to resolve a conflict within your team and take responsibility for making decisions and calming down your employees. Another case for the development of soft skills is VR training from Goodwill and Virtical Reality. In this training, employees of retail outlets wearing VR glasses seem to be in the place of the buyer and evaluate the virtual seller based on external characteristics. The main task of this training is to show employees the correct appearance and teach them to follow the rules of hygiene. In particular, this case was created to comply with the rules even during the COVID-19 pandemic. Elevating Customer Service With VR Training in Retail VR training promotes the development of interpersonal communication and problem-solving skills with clients as well. Company employees participate in virtual interaction with simulated customers, receiving feedback on their performance and improving their skills in a controlled environment. In virtual reality, company employees can hone their customer service skills in various scenarios: both during a normal purchase and during more stressful circumstances such as a big sales period. For example, the well-known shopping brand Walmart introduced VR training for store employees, where they learn and hone their skills in dealing with customers during the Black Friday sale. During this training, an employee wearing VR glasses works with virtual customers in a separate room under the supervision of senior employees who monitor the performance of tasks through computer screens. Revolutionizing Product Education: VR Employee Training in Retail Another type of virtual training is instruction on the study of different types of goods. By going through this training to study the products, the sales point employee can quickly learn the characteristics of each product and better orientate himself on which product and for what needs it is needed. For example, ReadySetVR has developed virtual training for supermarket sellers, one of the functions of which is to work with goods. In a digital environment, a worker examines different types of goods, from food products to household chemicals, and learns to correctly arrange them on virtual shelves using controllers. Safety First: Enhancing Retail Employee Training Safety training is key to every industry, from hazardous manufacturing to usual shops. Emergencies can happen anywhere, such as a cabinet falling on an employee or a chemical spill….

June 6, 2023
Beyond Gaming and Movies. Exploring Unconventional Applications of AR and VR in Entertainment

Virtual and augmented reality continue to successfully transform entertainment because the immersive digital environment creates an unforgettable and unique experience. According to Statista, the value of the VR gaming market was estimated at $7.7 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow to $45.09 billion in 2027. In this article, we will delve into the most interesting cases that demonstrate the limitless possibilities of AR and VR in entertainment. We will explore the fusion of technology and craftsmanship, from exciting sports competitions to amusing theater shows in VR that blur the line between reality and the virtual world. Explore Unusual VR Events That Redefine Entertainment Unconventional VR Games in the World of Entertainment One of the most popular areas where virtual reality is used is gaming. According to an IDC survey, 64% of virtual reality users said that the gaming industry is the industry where VR will thrive the most. That’s due to virtual reality being an immersive digital space in which you can create any setting and game tasks. VR is best suited for quests, shooters, and other genres where you need to move in space and perform tasks with controllers or hands. One of the original representatives of VR games is Job Simulator, where a headset user lives the life of an ordinary office worker. The essence of the game is performing all the tasks in the office of those times when many processes were not yet automated. The entire gameplay is complemented by bright graphics and specific humor. So, in this game, you can throw a stapler at the boss, fire employees, throw various objects in all directions, including food, etc. Lights, Camera, VR! The Next Chapter of Theatre and Movies in Virtual Reality Virtual reality is the next step in cinema after 3D and IMAX. VR can serve as an excellent tool for conveying the mood and idea of the movie since the main function of the movie itself is to immerse the viewer in the story. Read also: Virtual Reality Entertainment – A New Look In Storytelling  Speaking about theater, in the age of modern technology, live theater performances are also getting their boost with XR. One of these directions is the immersive theater, in which a viewer in a VR headset is directly immersed in the theatrical production itself. The distance between the viewer and the actors is thus reduced to a minimum. In an immersive theater, the destruction of the fourth wall takes place and the audience can experience the story as if they were in the same room with the actors. One of the leaders of this innovative direction is the National Theatre in London. A few years ago, they opened an immersive storytelling studio, which is designed for two main functions: developing and showing VR stage plays. Since the studio’s inception, the National Theatre has produced a number of successful XR productions, including the surreal Alice in Wonderland-themed AR stage play wonder.land and VR documentary Home/Aamir about refugee life. “It’s definitely not just for gaming. It’s definitely not just for performance. It’s a new technology and everyone’s trying to work out what it means to them. I’ve noticed that theatre makers respond well to it because they are used to an environment whereby the performer works in a 360 space and the audience can look wherever they want, any particular point in time,” said Toby Coffey, head of digital development at National Theatre.  Painting in a New Dimension. Wonders of VR Art Virtual reality has become a convenient platform for artists who create their works of art. Using digital space as a tool to draw installations, the level of an artist’s performance depends only on their imagination. The author no longer needs to buy an easel, canvases, expensive paints, or modeling clay. All you have to do is put on the VR glasses, and all the digital tools are at your fingertips. One of the most famous tools for creating a picture in virtual reality is Google Tilt Brush. An artist can use a controller and a virtual brush to create a sculpture or paint a 3D picture. Thus, a user wearing VR glasses is not limited only to a virtual easel. They have the opportunity to paint the entire space around them with virtual paint, literally creating an immersive picture. Gesture VR app allows you to create new 2D and 3D pictures in a digital studio with access to more than 200 models of people, animals, fantasy creatures, etc. Also, in virtual space, artists are able to control the lighting and poses of models and involve several friends in the creative process. In addition, Gesture VR gives an artist the option to draw both on a virtual easel and on real paper. Virtual Reality Takes Center Stage. The Thrilling Integration of VR in Sports and Public Events VR in Sports Entertainment Virtual reality has become widely used in sports. In general, it is used in several areas: training, amateur games, competitions, and virtual visits to events. As for training, virtual reality provides an athlete with the most realistic training conditions, without the need to allocate a separate room and equipment. And sometimes it is difficult to create a believable environment in the real world, depending on the place of training and the amount of money. Read also: The Way VR Improves Sports Training Experience  Speaking about visiting competitions, spectators put on VR headsets to get to, for example, virtual football or car races. A sports fan does not need to spend extra time and money to get to the stadium, and VR headsets provide the effect of presence, which is completely absent during watching the competition on TV. In addition, wearing headsets, a viewer can watch sports competitions from any angle: both from a seat and from the field itself. This is allowed in Xtadium app for Quest 2-3 VR glasses, where the viewer has an assortment of events to attend virtually, from Nascar races to boxing matches. The…

June 1, 2023
Revamping Farming Practices: Augmented Reality’s Role in Agriculture

With the advent of augmented reality, a new wave of technological advancements has flooded fields and farms, changing the way we approach farming. The integration of augmented reality makes agriculture more efficient and productive and offers agricultural professionals a variety of applications that bridge the gap between the physical and digital realms. In this article, we will explore in more detail the areas of AR application in agriculture and the advantages it provides to the agro-industry. AR Takes Root: Enhancing Training in Agriculture  AR training in the workplace has already proven its effectiveness. This type of training is successful because the training itself and the consolidation of employees’ skills are turned into an exciting gamified process with digital prompts, superimposed on the real space. In addition, augmented reality training provides more realistic scenarios that can occur while working with the equipment. In agriculture, farmworkers can use AR to perform certain tasks related to growing and harvesting crops, complying with safety rules, and handling equipment in a safe and controlled environment. Using AR training, employees of agricultural enterprises become more confident in themselves and their skills, more motivated during task performance, and the number of incidents and errors is significantly reduced. Read also: How To Improve Your Manufacturing With VR Training  AR Empowers Farmers to Safeguard and Monitor Plants As a rule, AR plant monitoring apps are used to monitor the growth of plant crops, identify various pests and diseases, as well as collect data on the nutrition and condition of the soil, and the number of fertilizers received by a plant. In addition, agriculture workers visualize real-time data on air temperature and humidity levels through augmented reality. For example, Insider Navigation, a company that works on AR experiences for indoor spaces, together with Visionaries 777’s sister company, AR Automation has developed an AR app for farmers who grow indoor plants in pots. Using the tablet, the planter points the camera to see data about the soil, lighting, humidity and the condition of the plant itself superimposed on the real plants. In addition, with the help of a tablet, the user can adjust the amount of LED light, as well as the ventilation and irrigation systems. “By using the INS SDK, AR Automation can deliver stable and accurate indoor tracking in a constantly changing environment, such as in vertical farms where plants are continuously growing and lighting is constantly changing”, said Nicolas Guyon, Co-Founder of Visionaries 777. Revolutionizing Remote Assistance and Troubleshooting for Farmers in Agriculture Using AR apps in agriculture, farmers receive real-time remote support from experts and technicians. They can use smart glasses or mobile devices to transmit real-time video, allowing experts to see and assess the situation. With the help of augmented reality, experts overlay digital notes and instructions, offering step-by-step assistance to the farmer. AR remote support minimizes lag time, as enterprise employees can quickly solve problems with the help of experts, even in remote or hard-to-reach areas. Typically, this kind of remote support for farmers is usually used to repair equipment. For example, SoftServe’s Reskill AR Solution is designed for remote maintenance of tractors. Instead of waiting for the technician to arrive, the farmworker remotely communicates with a specialist and visually shows the problem with the transport. Empowering Farmers with Enhanced Farm Management and Navigation Another area where AR applications are used in agriculture is management and navigation within an enterprise. With these applications, farm owners can see the total area of the fields, as well as track the location of tractors in real-time. For example, Farm Insight AR app allows the manager of an enterprise on the field itself to see through the smartphone camera digital pointers where and at what distance this or that tractor is located. Also, using Farm Insight, a manager can see the entire area of the fields from a bird’s eye view on the device. Such applications as Farm Insight significantly facilitate the management of an enterprise, because the work can be monitored remotely without entering the office. If the manager is in the field, he is better oriented in space and can optimize the coordination of work on the harvest. Read also: From Outdoors to Indoors: AR Navigation as Game-Changer    The integration of augmented reality is transforming agriculture and opening up a range of opportunities for industry professionals. With AR applications for agriculture, such as virtual crop research, precision farming, and real-time data visualization, the agribusiness industry is transforming and increasing its productivity. In its turn, the work of the farmers themselves becomes easier, they can improve their work skills, track the condition of their harvest, and repair their equipment much faster. Augmented reality is a powerful tool that has the potential to shape the future of agriculture, ensuring a sustainable and prosperous agricultural industry for generations to come. Image: Pixabay.