by Tom Ellison
Chuck on a pair of glasses that look like something right out of Back to the Future and transport yourself to 25,000 ft. mid loop the loop, or scuba dive in the Pacific. That is something all Virtual Reality headsets will be able to deliver.
Some of the most popular sets include the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Both will deliver an incredible user experience but for those not wanting to break the bank, cheaper alternatives are available if you cam compromise slightly on quality.
If you’re tired of looking but not touching, the HTC Vive will be able to take you to the next step: pick up your clubs for a quick 18 holes or dust off your paint brushes and create that next masterpiece.
This is an exciting time for VR, and we are starting to see how this technology can properly be utilised to generate higher engagement and return on investment.
VR technology has long been discussed as the next logical step in transforming the way we digest content, but is now the time for the events industry to take the leap of faith and join the party?
The use of VR in gaming, sports and film is well established and proving successful, but what does it hold for events professionals? How can we make this technology work for us and our clients?
To begin with there are two angles we should approach this from; that of the client and that of the delegate.
As a client, imagine being presented with a virtual example of your event before so much as a cable or piece of set has been laid. We have had success demonstrating to clients how their set would look within an event space. Not only does this give a virtual view of designs and concepts but it also gives them a chance to suggest changes before we get to that important build stage.
Let’s be clear, this isn’t as simple as a 3D set render on a screen, this is completely immersing your client through the use of a headset, into a 360-degree, 4-dimensional example of their event.
Now, here’s a thought for the organiser: imagine your delegates being able get inside your latest car before its launch and also behind the wheel before the car is even available for purchase. Wouldn’t that create a motivated buyer? The sky really is the limit when it comes to what VR can be used for. At Eclipse we have only touched the tip of the iceberg but have seen the success it can bring and we continue to investigate how VR can improve events for our clients, as well as engagement and ROI.
So, what does the future hold? Will VR take a hold of our industry like it has so many others? It be doing so already.
Tom Ellison is sales and marketing manager at Eclipse, a London-based production company supporting clients with creative concepts and technical solutions for their conferences and events.