Will virtual reality have a place in IT? Virtual reality (VR) is still in its infancy, currently most associated with the computer gaming industry. However, there is strong interest in it from companies outside computer gaming. As a matter of fact, Mark Zuckerberg over at Facebook has been quite interested in using virtual reality to expand the Facebook platform. Some are predicting that 2017 will be the year when Facebook VR finally emerges.
Which industries are likely to embrace virtual reality soonest? First on my list would have to be healthcare. The training opportunities are endless, as well as the ability to treat patients with different kinds of social anxieties or phobias. Just think of the possibilities: if you have a fear of public speaking, virtual reality could help you overcome your anxiety.
The automotive industry is prime for the use of virtual reality. Think what it might be like to shop for cars remotely with a variety of points of view in the interior and exterior.
Building on the marketing concept, advertising as an entity will have many uses for VR. Branded virtual reality experiences will offer a much more personal experience when it comes to advertisements.
Various aspects of education will be able to benefit from this technology as well. In my humble opinion, there are just too many different use cases to even start to list them.
Who would argue that tourism could have any better way to showcase destinations than with virtual reality technology?
Lastly, the entertainment industry will have numerous uses for VR. I receive a number of different kinds of press releases, and just recently this announcement caught my attention:
“Hollywood, CA — Action movie veteran Wesley Snipes will star in his first virtual reality project, THE RECALL VR ABDUCTION, scheduled for release this summer 2017. In this VR film experience, Snipes is interacting with the user through the eyes of another cast member, played by R. J. Mitte (Breaking Bad’s Walt Jr.), to pursue death-defying adventures in a world facing alien invasion. This standalone transmedia piece exists in the same universe as the feature-length film THE RECALL, and features the same cast. The Recall is produced by Mind’s Eye Entertainment, who has teamed up with VMI Worldwide, Bridgegate Pictures, Invico Capital, Talking Dog Studios, and SkyVR to create this virtual reality piece that places viewers in this storyworld colored by extraterrestrial terror.”
I think it will be interesting to see how much of an impact virtual reality will have on the movie industry and the way movies will be conceived moving forward. As we recently learned with the release of the Star Wars film Rouge One, technology has become so intertwined with film industry that actors are beginning to become an optional part of the process.
Let’s ponder for a moment and say that virtual reality really takes off and more and more companies start presenting their products and services within a virtual reality. Would it not be conceivable that virtual reality might completely replace the current-day monitor and video display?
What would a day in the life of virtual reality IT look like? Currently, that is just a journey through our own imaginations, but the movie industry has given us a sneak peek at some possibilities. The movie Minority Report is one example with an interesting take on that idea. In this film, there was a research room, if you will. The operator had the ability to bring up images of objects and data with a single swipe of a hand and literally move them around at will within the scope of view. Could this be an insight into what IT operations will look like in the future? I will leave that question to you. Will virtual reality have a place in IT?