How to Get Started Using Virtual Reality [Tips, Tricks & Tools]

Woman learning how to get started in VR or virtual reality using her computer and VR headset

The Complete Guide to Getting Started With VR

If you are looking to get started with VR you must first understand what it’s all about. The world of virtual reality has grown much more significant in the last decade. At the start of the decade, the idea of a fully immersive virtual reality game still seemed to most like the stuff of science fiction.

Today there are multiple major players in the industry, and it is only growing more popular each day. So, what is virtual reality, what can you do with it, how much does it cost to get started, and most importantly HOW do you get started using VR?  All discussed here…

Getting Starting With VR

To get started with virtual reality, you need to get the right equipment. Today there are many manufacturers making quality VR headsets.

There are three main categories of headsets. Beyond this, there are some additional accessories that some but not. R apps require such as a controller.

What is Virtual Reality or VR?

Virtual reality lets people fully immerse themselves in a virtual world. Instead of staring at a screen from feet away while playing a video game, now you can step right into the action yourself. Just put on your VR headset, boot it up, and get ready for the action.

These apps and games put you in a handcrafted world. Most also have built-in audio features as well for completely engaging surround sound. If you are a gamer, you may like directional audio to hear which direction the action is.

What Equipment is Necessary to Get Started in VR?

The first thing you need to begin experiencing virtual reality is the right equipment, which starts with a headset. The three different types of VR headsets that currently dominate the markets are listed below.

Each will be similar to the other, but there are key differences between the various models. Depending on the type of phone or device you plan to use in VR, you may want to select one model over another.

For example, let’s say you own an iPhone. You would not want to get a headset that was not compatible with Apple products. This limits the options available down to a more manageable number.

That way you don’t waste time learning about the equipment you would not be capable of using anyway.

Standalone Headset:

Multiple companies make standalone headsets for virtual reality. However, there are only two top contenders in the standalone headset market. These are the Oculus Rift and the HYC Vive. Each of these does not require any additional cables or outside equipment.

The headset contains everything you need for the experience. Any standalone headset will be wireless, but not all wireless headsets are standalone.

These are great if you want to experience virtual reality but don’t own a smartphone or computer because you do not need any additional equipment. The headset will do the job fine alone.

Desktop and Console Headsets:

The next major category of virtual headsets has been designed to work with desktop computers. The most popular example of this kind of headset is The PlayStation VR headset made to work with the Sony PlayStation 4.

The biggest drawback of these kinds of headsets is they are limited in their mobility. If you want to take it with you somewhere, you’ll have to get all of the equipment together.

These can be pretty impressive pieces of equipment all though. They are becoming more and more lifelike each year.

Device Headset:

The final major category of virtual reality headsets are headsets designed to be compatible with mobile devices. These use the screen of the device as the screen for the virtual reality experience.

They hold the device inside of the headset and suspend it in front of your eyes. Some of these are not as impressive as the consul or standalone options, but they are becoming more and more technically advanced.

Controllers:

If you play any games in virtual reality or use any applications, then the chances are that you will need a controller. These allow you to easily control the engine while you are enjoying the virtual reality experience.

They are all wireless and normally aren’t able to sense the motion of your arms and hands to display their locations in the virtual reality world.

Hand Tracking:

Virtual reality headset manufacturers are implementing one of the newest technology in hand tracking technology.

This allows you to easily control a virtual reality experience without having to handle a cumbersome controller.

What Can You Do With VR?

Today, there are many things you can do you with virtual reality. Let’s put it this way, VR has come a LONG WAY. If you want to experience what it would feel like to go to a place in person, you can try to simulate it through virtual reality.

There are entire stores full of apps and games you can download to use in virtual reality. Everything from playing your favorite video game to painting a new painting on canvas can be done inside the virtual world.

Best VR Apps
The following three apps are just a couple of examples of the wide range of experiences possible through virtual reality. We also have a while discussion around the best VR games for your iPhone if you want to read that here.

There are many more where these came from, and a ton of them are relatively undiscovered because of the fairly small demographic using virtual reality currently. You could easily end up finding a home-run that few people know of if you look for it.

VirtualSpeech:

This app is perfect for people that need to give speeches but have stage fright. If you believe that practicing your speech in front of an audience would help you and deliver it better, you have to try it out. It allows you to practice giving a speech in front of a live audience.

Romans From Mars 360:

Of course, there are more video games made for virtual reality than almost any other type of application.

Romans from Mars 360 is just one of the many amazing virtual reality games that you can experience this year. See if you can save the world in an immersive 3-D fully 360° world that is entirely virtual.

There are many other video games totally worth playing available for virtual reality. If you enjoyed playing this game then you definitely should try some of the other ones that are out for virtual reality headsets.

NYT VR:

The New York Times has taken virtual reality in bed, something with it that creates a new type of journalism.

They first began five years ago, creating virtual reality journalism pieces that you can experience. Today there are over 300 such examples of journalistic art.

Advantages and Drawbacks of Virtual Reality

Depending on the perspective you adopt, there are different advantages or drawbacks associated with virtual reality. Overall, it seems to be a unique piece of technology that is highly versatile. While it will not transform everything, know many new ways of thinking have yet to be explored in this industry.  When you are just getting started using VR, you can look at the advantages and disadvantages:

Advantages:

You can create more immersive experiences digitally using virtual reality than other technologies. Today more applications support virtual reality than at any time in the past. Also, the headsets that are manufactured today are much higher quality than those of the past.

Higher quality equipment and more experience in the development community developing a virtual reality application has made the virtual reality industry much more palatable to the average consumer now. If you want to play video games and be part of the action, it is the best way to do this.

Drawbacks:

There are multiple potential drawbacks commonly associated with virtual reality on those they typically are not too large of a deal. The biggest complaint is that people get motion sickness when they play for too long.

The easiest solution for this is to take regular breaks. Being in a world where there are tons of movement, but your body does not move in reality, can induce motion sickness. The other major problem is that no matter how high tech the screen technology is when the screen is only a couple of inches from your eyes, you will still see pixels.

This can create the virtual world’s effect, looking as if you were staring at it through a screen door.

Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality

Augmented reality is another type of software that has been making huge waves in recent years. Instead of transporting you to an entirely virtual world, virtual reality does augmented reality applications, focusing on immersing experience in a slightly different way.

Typically, they will use the camera of your device and then overly virtual items on top of it. This creates a reality augmented with virtual items, but you still see the real world around you. Perhaps the most popular example of this is the video game called Pokemon go.  We have a whole article dedicated to the differences in these two technologies if you want to check that out.

How Much Does It Cost To Get Started with VR?

The total that it will cost you to get started with virtual reality depends on the equipment you purchase. The more expensive the equipment is, the more that it will cost you to get started. For example, if you want full body tracking it starts to get a bit expensive.

In general, most pieces of virtual reality equipment will cost a few hundred dollars. For example, the PlayStation VR headset retails for $400.Once you have the equipment, then you may also need to pay for applications.

Prices for virtual reality applications can vary significantly, with some being available for free and others costing over $50. The key to remember when getting started with VR is that you can spend a lot, or just a little.  Either way the goal is to have fun and you don’t need to spend a ton of money to do that!

Are Large Rooms Necessary For Virtual Reality?

Many people who are just getting started with VR have the preconceived notion that they will need a bigger room than they have to play virtual reality comfortably. While having a larger room can give you more areas to move in while you are playing, there is no requirement for large rooms.

The vast majority of virtual reality experiences are designed to be played while completely motionless. Some manufacturers have minimum requirements for the size of the room where their devices are to be played.

Final Thoughts Regarding Virtual Reality

The world of virtual reality has advanced by leaps and bounds over the last ten years. Now many quality products take advantage of the new technology effectively. You can experience entire news stories from virtual reality and play some of your favorite video games from all time.

The future of technology only looks brighter. Things are being developed that promise to launch the technology into the stratosphere, including virtual smell technology, to incorporate all of your senses into the virtual world.

Eventually, it may even be possible to interface with the devices through a neural interface directly. These devices allow computers to read the brain’s thought patterns essentially.

These have already been used to give disabled individuals control over computers to communicate more easily. One thing is for certain; there is no sign of the virtual reality industry slowing down anytime soon.

What Is VR Full Body Tracking? [A Detailed Overview]

Virtual Reality Full Body Tracking - man boxing

Did you know that you can fight alongside your favorite character in your best movie or game? This sounds amazing! Imagine that it is possible for you to swim with fishes and you will not need equipment. Now, this sounds impossible! Well, with the advancement of technology, this is not entirely impossible due to full body tracking virtual reality.

This concept may seem difficult for you to conceptualize. After all, we live in the real world, but the virtual reality involves using high-performing computers such as gloves and headsets, to live in an imaginary world.

Virtual Reality Moves to the Next Phase

Due to the advancement of technology, virtual reality is set to transform into a whole-body experience commonly known as VR full body tracking. Full body tracking in virtual reality is made possible through the use of technological devices which are attached to the feet and the hands of the user, which enables the tracking of their position in the space. The technology was tested and demonstrated at the computer graphic and interactive technique conference that was held at Siggraph.

To understand correctly what virtual reality full body tracking means, we should first understand what Virtual reality entails. In simple terms, virtual reality is living through computers that don’t exist in reality. Does this make sense? To put it better, virtual reality can be understood through internalization of its name because its definition originates from its name. The name simply means close reality. Therefore, it is the technology that belongs you close to computer reality as possible.

In technical term, the close reality is the term that is used to denote 3-D technology. This is the technology that is generated in the computers’ environment and can be investigated and interacted with many people. Through the use of high-tech devices, the participants get completely associated and immersed by objects that perform a series of the environment.

VR Full Body Tracking

We have already seen that virtual reality allows you to visualize what the characters in the game are doing. The computer devices make you feel like one of the participants. Now, full body tracking in the virtual reality gives you the entire virtual reality. In order to experience full body tracking experience, you need three things.

First, you need a conceivable and some sort of lavishly definitude investigation virtual world. These are things like production devices and PC models. Second, a high tech personal computer which can change rapidly and recognize what you do and where you go. By doing so, the personal computer is able to adapt quickly, giving you a continuous experience. Yes, it should work like in reality, what you hear or see should change as soon as the movie move.

Lastly, it would help if you had equipment that should be connected to your personal computer. The role of the equipment is to involve you in the virtual world as you meander around. For a full experience, you will need to put on other devices such as the head-mounted display which has two screens and sounds. You will also need to put on at least one tangible gloves.

What Else Do You Need for Full Body Tracking in Virtual Reality?

It can’t be a virtual reality full body tracking without the involvement of the technology created by OptiTrack. OptiTrack technology has been tested, demonstrated and proven in a recent conference held at Siggraph. All the virtual reality company that gets technical problems with their system gets help from OptiTrack Company.

So, how does OptiTrack technology work in full body tracking? It works similarly with HTC Vive and Vive Trackers. They give you small plastic technological devices that you are supposed to attach to your wrist. After doing so, the vive system can track the location of your hands in the space.

Benefits of OptiTrack Technology

OptiTrack developed their 3D tracking solutions a decade ago and started selling it to the companies. The company targeted customers who are in the visual effects industry who needed OptiTrack technology in order to add human feeling to the animated characters. The company achieved this by putting the real-life actors and famous athletes into motion, among many other things.

Recently, OptiTrack management realized that VR companies are potential customers for their tracking solutions. Therefore, they decided to sell the same product to them since all the emerging world hardware vendors in virtual reality were concentrating on non-commercial applications. During this time, Oculus and Vive were the only good trackers in the market. However, these solutions were limited to room-scale. According to Brian Niles, OptiTrack Chief Strategy Officer, OptiTrack solutions are better since they don’t have a limit.

Also, OptiTrack is able to work in large spaces. Before the emergency of this technology, no one thought that there would be any solution that would be able to work in areas measuring 10,000 square feet and more. This is now possible courtesy of the OptiTrack technology. Well, other technologies such as Oculus Rift and HTC Vive also offer virtual reality full body tracking to the games and movies that use 3D space. However, they cannot cover any area that is beyond 150 square feet. Yes, this is enough for a living room but too small for a virtual reality centre.

Editor: Our Look At the Best VR Games for the iPhone

Self Calibrated Tracking System

You want a technology that can enable you to pick a wide range of props when in virtual reality? Yes, this is another advantage of OptiTrack in addition to covering significant areas. The technology ensures that every accessory that you pick, such as guns, flashlights, and any other object is accurately represented in the virtual reality as the game goes on. The best thing is that the company has extended this tracking experience to the players themselves. Therefore, with this technology, you can entirely rely on multi-player experiences and their movements in virtual reality.

Another advantage is the self-calibrating tracking system that the company recently introduced at SigGraph, which enables full body tracking. The technology, commonly known as motion tracking gives the required calibration to the cameras that are used. The operators can account for small structural movements since they mostly re-calibrate their sets every day. During the fundamental movements, the employees typically walk in the space where they wave a special wand to confirm whether all the cameras in place and working.

The best thing with OptiTrack system is that it can do all this kind of calibration by itself while still, it is in use. Some say that this is not a significant advancement, but they forget that it is the biggest deal in the nascent industry. Therefore, if you have a movie theatre, you don’t need to hire expensive specialists in every location, just try to bring VR to your mall.

Best Full Body Tracker for Virtual Reality?

The OptiTrack has the best trackers for full body virtual tracking. In fact, the technology is so much advanced that it can figure out a random general location. Not many virtual solutions can be able to see and react to where the body is actually when looked down in a massive step forward. This is why we believe that OptiTrack technology cannot match any other virtual solutions as it comfortably does this. Any person who has usedOptiTrack before can confirm that this is a reality. It is the only technology that offers the tracking experience that allows you to use your hands in virtual reality space. Is this not amazing?

Yes, we have gotten this far in the invention of the technological devices. Are we getting ahead of ourselves? There is still more technology that is in the testing stage, which is yet to be used. Perhaps we will be able to see it in the near future. For now, it is being displayed as a proof-of-concept, and we are not aware of when to expect it in a local arcade. However, it will be soon.

Overall, virtual reality will make games and movie theatres a more exciting experience. It is possible to participate in the movie as a character that you like courtesy of the technological developments. One of these developments, as already discussed, is OptiTrack will allows full body virtual tracking. It uses technological devices that are attached to wrist and feet, which enables tracking of the objects in the space. The technology has several advantages, all of which has been addressed in this article. Transform your theatre centre to a fantastic experience through this technology.

How to Use Virtual Reality in the Classroom

Students using virtual reality in classroom while learning and exploring using Oculus VR headsets

Continual advancements in technology give students an ever-growing edge when it comes to in class and out of class learning. With the creation of new and engaging apps many teachers at all grade levels are able to expand education out of traditional books and programs and give students a more in-depth educational experience. Additionally, using technology such as VR (virtual reality) in the classroom can also can greatly enhance learning on many levels.

Why Use Virtual Reality in the Classroom?

Virtual reality can be used to create an entirely different world. It enhances real life experiences and makes learning more exciting for students. Students spend so much time on phones, tablets and video games that they can easily become bored with standard textbooks (Unless of course your playing VR games on your iPhone). Technology is paving the way for how learning and work will be done. Utilizing VR keeps students engaged throughout their classroom time and gives them something to look forward to.  Schools are one of the best examples of how Virtual Reality technology can be used in the real world.

What Types Of Schools Can Utilize VR?

Elementary schools, middle schools, high schools and even universities can utilize VR in curriculums. Students of all ages can benefit from experiencing things in a more hands on way. Virtual reality can enhance learning and bring field trips directly to the classroom.

How Can VR Be Used In The Class Room?

Teachers that want to give a more dimensional approach to studies can incorporate VR into their lesson plans. The traditional teaching methods can still be utilized in conjunction with books and computer programs and the VR can be added to help give further understanding to the lessons.

Which Subjects Does Virtual Reality Work Best With?

Science, history and geography are some of the to subjects that would greatly benefit from VR but other classes such as home economics and even literature can benefit from incorporating this thee dimensional approach to learning. Could you imagine participating in a cooking class and then joining a VR lesson where it appears as though you are in the kitchen and everything is right in front of you?

The same is true for geography. Students can gain a better understanding of regions across the world when they are able to see them in 3D. Molecules, atoms and microbes look fascinating in a book and on a computer program but they also look amazing when they are hovering in the air around students who are studying them virtually. Although there are many who believe there are health side effects with using virtual reality, the use of this technology in a school setting seem to far outweigh any perceived negative benefit.

Travel The World Without Boarding A School Bus

Students have visited zoos, museums, state capitals and state parks but the have not hiked mount Everest or gone diving off the great barrier reef. Virtual Reality brings these world wide travel destinations into the classroom for students to experience without ever having to get on a school bus. Teachers are able to bring these experiences into their rooms and then incorporate the experiences into their lessons to go over tides, currents, hemispheres, altitudes, wildlife and topography. The sky is literally the limit when it comes to the fantastic places that teachers can take their students via VR.

VR Can Benefit Elementary Schools

Virtual reality is ideal for kids in kindergarten through 5th grade. This is the prime age for kids to teach them tech and make learning exciting. When students are excited about learning they are in turn, excited to attend school. Establishing this desire to learn at a young age will keep kids looking forward to school long into middle school and high school.

Students typically want to go attend school in order to make friends and enjoy the fun special classes such as art, music and gym class. It is not often that a fourth grader will say they are looking forward to attending school because of science class. When that science class is engaging and utilizing VR that student’s perspective may change. Many students are excited to try the new technology by using VR in the classroom, and have science literally at their fingertips digitally.

Early elementary students in kindergarten through second grade live in a state of mind that involves a lot of imagination and play. This age group does well during recess and play time and they typically respond much better to fun cartoon style educational clips and applications that appear as games with reward systems.

When VR in the classroom is incorporated into students within this age bracket they can go to the zoo, build a home or plant flowers all virtually. This gives them more room to enhance their imagination while exploring education.

VR In Middle School

6th to 8th grade students often get lost in the chaos of junior high. They focus on shuffling from classroom to classroom and are not as engaged in education as younger students. They don’t spend as much time exploring their imaginations and rather turn to technology such as smart phones for their entertainment.

Virtual reality helps keep them focused on their classes and gives them something to look forward to in class. English literature can be brought to life via VR. Charles Dickens classics can be presented in 3D imagery to better help students understand the era of the classics and the characters.

Learning the Constitution and early history can also be more entertaining when students can feel as though they are standing right in the middle of the signing of the Declaration of Independence or the Revolutionary war. It makes the entire learning experience more personal and memorable.

Complex Concepts Made Easier In High School

High school students exploring advanced placement classes and learning complex concepts will have an easier grasp on what they are learning when they can experience it through virtual reality. Additionally, students taking advanced computer classes and web development will especially enjoy diving deeper into the technology offered via VR.

How Can Teachers Set Up VR?

Depending on the program used to work with the virtual reality in the classroom, teachers can easily set up whatever lesson plan they want. In many cases the virtual experience can be added and edited directly from the educators phone or tablet. They are in complete control over what content the students will learn about and experience.

Some programs can cost more than others but many offer teacher discounts that can be applied. The lessons can be set up for a specific allotted amount of time so that students can work collaboratively within a group and then study based off of the VR experience they participated in. The bottom line is that teachers can easily use VR in the classroom if they prepare in advance.

Virtual Reality For Teachers

Virtual reality can be used in more aspects than just education within the classroom. Teachers participating in continuing education hours and in service days can go over many work scenarios via VR as well. Administration has the opportunity to further educate staff on training and student relations by creating virtual reality and augmented reality sessions where teachers can interact with scenarios. The reactions or actions of the faculty through these simulated situations can help administrators better educate their staff on how to handle specific situations that may occur.

Types Of Scenarios Teachers May Have Simulated Via VR

  • Soft lock down drills
  • Lock down drills
  • Fire drills
  • Tornado drills
  • Active shooter drills
  • Student outbursts
  • Parent conferences
  • Co-worker conflicts

Today’s teachers face a wide variety of concerns on a daily basis. They cannot simply focus on education and their students. There are many outside factors that can cause interruptions in their day to day lessons. Learning how to handle these situations will help prepare them in the event that they arise. Incorporating these situations as VR experiences during training will give the staff a chance to walk through and talk through all of these potential disruptions.

Virtual Reality Paves The Way

Now that students are spending more time learning at home parents are also jumping on the VR bandwagon. Online tech providers have different types of virtual reality programs that can be utilized for home school purposes. Those e-learning can reach out to their assigned teachers for suggestions on platforms to discover.

Parents who are home schooling can incorporate VR with their own determined lesson plans. Parents are able to teach their kids and take them on virtual field trips right from the comfort of their own homes. During these trying times where we feel a bit more confined we can feel confident that technology is still advancing and bringing experiences and education to our students by every means possible. The bottom line is that using VR in the classroom benefits students, teachers and parents.

What Are The Best VR Games for Your iPhone?

Woman walking a pair of virtual reality glasses using her iPhone to play games

The iPhone has been around for a little over ten years now and during that time it has seen quite the evolution. (Virtual reality itself has been around much longer but that is a different story). When it was first introduced, it was already a revolutionary innovation, but each iteration has added new features. If you are looking for a game that has that VR experience that you are looking for, we are going to give you the best of the best!

Today one of the most popular new features of iPhones is their ability to use virtual reality. When virtual reality first began to be produced for consumer consumption, not many developers made games for virtual reality. This led to a limited selection of VR games despite the phone being completely capable of playing them. Now, VR games for iPhone are many, and some of the titles will just blow your socks off!

There are a lot of high-quality virtual reality games available for the iPhone. Let’s take a look at the top 15 best VR games for iPhone, that don’t involve Google cardboard.

The List of VR Games for 2020

The following list of VR games for iPhone is not in an ordered ranking. They are all high-quality games, and some people will probably like one more than another.

It will depend on what type of gameplay you enjoy the most. However, no matter what type of gameplay you enjoy, there should be something among these 15 games that will leave you feeling like you have experienced one of the best things ever.

1. End Space


This virtual reality game puts you in control of one of the universe’s most advanced starfighters as part of the united trade consortium. You are tasked with going to battle in the Tartarus sector. There have been reports that the Tartarus liberation front hand been targeting the united trade consortium’s secret technology to build jump drives.

You are tasked with maintaining the dominance of your corporation and amassing a fortune while you do so. As you are playing, you will be able to use your pulse lasers, and you’re meeting your missiles to take down enemies with laser precision.

As you progress through the game, you will unlock new weapons as you go on more impressive adventures. If you have ever dreamed of becoming an astronaut, this virtual reality game could be one step closer to making that feel like a reality. The End Space website has a good overview of this game if you want to learn more.

2. Zombie Shooter VR


Welcome to one of the most engaging post-apocalyptic worlds that you can enter playing virtual reality on your iPhone. Throughout the world, there are hordes of zombies lying in wait for you. You need to find a weapon and then explore the subway tunnels that seem to be deserted.

You should be careful because there could be danger lurking around in a quarter. In this virtual reality game, you can have a full 360° of movement freedom. The world has been carefully crafted to immerse you in it.

As soon as you put on your virtual reality headset, he will be transported to an entirely new world. If you are looking for something that will get your blood pumping and you typically enjoy horror movies, or survival horror games link, you will fall in love with this all-new VR iPhone game.

3. Romans From Mars 360


Finally, experience your all-time favorite video game Romans from Mars in virtual reality. In this game, you will take the place of a soldier for the Roman empire. You are given a crossbow, and you are the only thing that will be able to stop an invading army from Mars.

As you please, you will have a complete who is the freedom of your hands, and you will use them to launch arrows as well as cast magic. Will you be able to defend the castle from being overrun by these Martians, or will things end differently?

Throughout the game, you will be confronted with wave after wave of enemy units. Throughout the game, you will get the option to upgrade for Crossville and eventually create the most powerful weapon. This 360° experience is something that anyone who wants to play a high-quality VR game on their iPhone I need to take a look at.

4. Sisters: A VR Ghost Story


Caution should is warranted when you are considering playing this game. It is one of the most immersive virtual reality games developed yet for the iPhone platform. It is compatible with all mobile virtual reality viewers and is the premier horror experience for mobile virtual reality. Immerse yourself in the 360° of both visual and audio designed to submerge you in an alternate reality fully.

The controls of the game or incredibly easy to use and are primarily based upon the players’ gaze. eBay neural and directional audio will come together with the environment that the developers have lovingly crafted to create one of the most engaging virtual reality games ever developed for the iPhone yet. As with all other games on this page, they are available in the app store.

5. VR Sniper


Welcome to the soldier of the front line in this whole new virtual reality game for the iPhone. In this virtual reality game, you are given a sniper rifle and a simple task. You must go to a desert city that is being targeted by terrorists. This is the vr mode version of war! Some on our team referred to this game as a zombie shooter style game but I thought it was just a good shooting game.

The rules are fairly simple. Look for the terrorists from where you are positioned and then take aim. If you can aim in under three seconds, then you will be good to go. It is possible to play without a VR headset, but it will be much less immersive.

If you want to experience the life of a sniper as they are on the front lines defending the world against terrorists, this game will give you the closest experience to that in real life possible. This one has a low rating on the App Store but our team really enjoyed it regardless of the low star rating given by others.

6. Fractal Combat X


This virtual reality game for the iPhone is based around aerial combat. The graphics are impressive and fully 3-D. Expect to experience some lightning peace combat as you fly through the air in your virtual jet.

The story mode includes dozens of single-player missions, and there are new missions added every day. You can control your plane with precision, and as you battle various missions, you will earn the ability to upgrade your vehicle to create the ultimate flying machine.

READ: “Side Effects of Virtual Reality”

7. Hidden Temple Adventure


This immersive experience gives you the ability to finally see what life would be like if you were a treasure hunter. Have you ever been lying down in bed and dreaming about going to search for hidden treasures?

If so, then this game will be a masterpiece that you simply must experience. The ancient temple is one of the most iconic video game scenery that we have ever seen. The game is played through a classic point and click mechanism that will have you solving difficult puzzles as you try to discover the hidden secrets of the tomb. Traverse through the temples corridors in the full 360° virtual reality experience you deserve. This is one of my personal favorite vr games for iPhone especially when used on a modern version like the iPhone 11 Pro.

8. Germ buster VR


This virtual reality game gives you the ability to clean up the world and finally get rid of all of the infection streams that are laying on surfaces all around you. You will kill the germs by spraying them with your own bubble gun.

The germs will try to attack you as you play, so you must take them out quickly to avoid any damage. If you are looking for a comedic, get enjoyable first-person shooter virtual reality experience than this iPhone game, it will probably fit the bill perfectly for you.

The graphics are rather impressive, and the full 360° immersive experience it’s one of the most engaging playing experiences we have had on the iPhone yet.

9. Final Kick VR


Have you ever wanted to step into the penalty box and make the big shot? This virtual reality game will give you the chance to finally experience the excitement of being on one of the world’s best football teams. You will be responsible for making the most impressive goals that you have ever seen in sports.

See if you can for your opponents and fake them out to finally become the world champion. The graphics are incredibly detailed and life-like, giving you an easy time immersing in the experience. You will be responsible for kicking the winning goal at the championship, and you will have the entire crowd chanting your name.

If that sounds like something you have experienced only in your dreams, you definitely need to try this game out soon. It could be one of the best experiences you have ever played on the iPhone yet. That is especially true if you are a huge fan of the game football. There are no difficult controls, which is one of the easiest games to pick up and play on the iPhone so far.

10. VR XRacer


This is the virtual reality version of the video game x-rays are. It is one of the most popular virtual reality games ever developed, with over 5 million people downloading it worldwide. It is an incredibly addictive experience, especially if you enjoy racing games and want to be on track yourself.

Each race will be a little more difficult than the last. As you win more and more, you will collect credits that you can use to upgrade the ship that you use while racing. This game is set during a brutal war between the people of earth and some unidentified flying objects attacking the planet.

Join the resistance and get into the jet to go and fight back against the foreign invaders. See if you can save the day. This is truly one of the best vr games for iPhone.

11. Inmind VR


This adventure game includes some cardboard elements and is playable with or without a virtual reality headset. For the most immersive experience, virtual reality will let you journey into the brain of patience as you try to look for neurons that are causing them to suffer from mental disorders.

The human mind is represented in a full world that you will be brought into to experience something almost ineffable. Come to the future where humans have much more advanced healthcare and can use nanotechnology to operate on the patient from inside their bodies.If you have ever wanted to become a surgeon but do not want to go to medical school, this game will be the closest you can get. This is one of the more popular VR games on the market right now.

Editor’s Note: Read How to Use VR In the Classroom

12. InCell VR


This racing game includes a little bit of strategy and science as well. You are taken back to the world of the human cell. Do you have been transported into the new micro-world where you will be tasked with saving the cell from destruction.

It seems to have been invaded by some pathogens and requires serious help immediately. As you journey through the human cell’s world, you will be pursued by a wave of VirusThat is overtaking everything it comes into contact with. Will you be able to outrun the approaching virus and save the day, or will it consume you?

13. VR Noir


In this normal world, you will get to play Veronica Cole train, a private detective that has been hurting for money and needs to take a job they do not want to have. Do you will be given the wishes of a client, and he will need to decide if you are willing to go the distance to make the job happen.

This unique game is both a blend of VR filmmaking as well as a video game. It is a fairly experimental game, but it does let you become an investigator. If you enjoy mysteries and have always wanted Live life or to see it through the eyes of a private detective in this virtual reality game, the iPhone will get you the closest to that experience possible.

14. Lamper VR: Firefly Rescue


Play as limber the firefly in his second on the video game that is available in for 360° immersive virtual reality. Spiders have invaded the firefly kingdom, and you will need to go out and save the world. Your friends have been kidnapped, and you need to go to the woods and the caves to rescue them.

As you rescue your friends, you will collect power-ups that will let you fight through the enemies. See if you cannot collect all of your friends and discover the five characters that have been hidden throughout the world. It is an addictive game that will leave you wanting to come back and play more.

The graphics are impressive and will remind you of some of the favorite video games you played as a child. The only thing that you need to know about this game is that you should be cautious because it can be a rather addictive video game if you do not pay close attention.

15. Roller Coaster VR Theme Park


Do you enjoy writing on roller coasters? If so, this virtual reality video game puts you in the seat of a crazy roller coaster. It is one of the coolest ways to get the thrill of being at an amusement park without ever leaving your home’s comfort.

Sit down into the roller coaster and buckle up because we are about to go on a wild ride. Fly through the carefully crafted 3-D world is the experience of all in all 360° of virtual reality.

There are only a few VR games out there that have created an experience as an immersive is this for the iPhone. People who love amusement parks will have a hard time putting this one down.

Final thoughts regarding the best VR iPhone games in 2020

The best virtual reality games for iPhone are all enjoyable to play, but you will likely find one of them that becomes your favorite. See if you have the time to play through each of these games because you never know which one will end up being your favorite.

It could end up being a game that you did not expect would be, and playing through all of these games gives you the brightest experience of virtual reality on your iPhone possible. That way, you have a good understanding of the capabilities and everything that virtual reality on the iPhone can bring.

As you play through the games, you will experience the artistic visions of multiple developers from all over the world. They worked hard for you to play these games, and the best way for you to honor their hard work is to sit down, put on your virtual reality headset, and get started playing some of these virtual reality games on your iPhone.

History of Virtual Reality and What the Future Holds

What will history books say about virtual reality?

What is the history of virtual reality and how did it get started?

In the 1900s, no one would have guessed that future generations would have the ability to dream with their eyes open. Virtual Reality allows the consumer to be inside an experience of their choosing. This computerized technology generates a simulated environment that fosters up all senses; smell, sight, touch, hearing, with an exception for taste.

Virtual reality is made of two ingredients. The first component is the three dimensional imagery that resembles authentic everyday objects. The second component is the amount of proficiency it has to monitor the physical movements of the user. Hence, most people wonder, what is it like to be in VR?

The Virtual Experience

Virtual Reality causes the user to lose sight of what is real. In order to do so, experts have the user experience total immersion. Immersion is “how well virtual reality is able to mimic or simulate the real world as we know it,”(kids.frontiersin.org). Let’s say an individual has traveled to the beach on a Saturday evening. Once returning home, that person may wish to revisit the beach to regain a bit of sanity from everyday society. By using a VR headset, this technology would make it as if he/she has never left.

In order for users to have an optimum experience, it requires depth of information and breadth of information. Breadth of information is an element of immersion that provides a detailed sensory experience that prioritizes the visual and auditory aspects. At the same time, depth of information merely alludes to the volume and quality that a user consumes when placed in the virtual environment. This especially applies to the graphics of their surroundings.

Basics of A Virtual Reality Headset

Today, most people know of the popular VR headsets, the Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR. But as amazing as they are, how do they work? Through a console or computer, video needs to be sent into the headset. The headset has the ability to track the user’s head movement. Hence, if one was to suddenly shift their head to the right, the imagery would shift along with the movement. Specifically, a system named 6DoF follows the range of movement a person’s head has.

6DoF is not the only head-tracking component a headset has. These internal components are called gyroscope, accelerometer and a magnetometer. A gyroscope is a device that maintains rotational motion. In contrast, an accelerometer is an instrument meant to measure acceleration. A magnetometer is simply a device that measures magnetism.

An effective headset requires low latency with a maximum of 50 milliseconds. If it is any higher, the user’s current reality is shattered and it would seem artificial. The user would be able to see a lag when they decide to turn or the environment within the VR is altered. In addition to this requirement, headphones really seal the deal. Headphones provide the sense of hearing that adds to the experience of immersion.

The History Of Virtual Reality In 1800s

Looking back on the past, virtual reality was not always this impressive. The first developments of VR was started by Sir Charles Wheatstone in the 1830s. Sir Charles Wheatstone was a English physicist born on Feb. 6, 1802, in Gloucester, England. He was the first individual to depict what Stereopsis, or depth perception truly is. Stereopsis describes a person with healthy vision observing an object, with each eye working at opposing angles. This information is uploaded into the brain, establishing the third dimensional reality that humans see.

By defining binocular vision, Sir Wheatstone was awarded the Royal Medal of the Royal Society in 1840. This led to the making of the earliest form of a stereoscope, which provided proof that the combination of two images can create a third dimensional perception of reality.

History of VR 1930 to 1960

Fast-forwarding to 1935, Stanley Weinbaum constructed a fictional prototype of a VR in the short story, Pygmalion’s Spectacles. Pygmalion’s Spectacles describes a story about a protagonist that meets his instructor who has somehow created ‘miracle goggles’. These ‘miracle goggles’ allowed one to enter a virtual world of anything he imagines.

Quickly after that, the first virtual reality gadget in the history of VR was created. In 1956, Morton Heilig invented the ‘Cinema of the Future’, Sensorama, as the first legit VR technology. Sensorama resembles a large booth that could fit a maximum of four people. It was composed of technical parts that constituted what anyone was looking for in a VR experience: vibrations, audio, atmospheric effects and smell. Morton Heilig wanted Sensorama to be used as a way to enhance a person’s cinematic experience turning a third person experience into a first person experience.

History of Virtual Reality in the 1960’s

In 1961, Headsight was the HMD built by Philco Corporation engineers named Comeau and Bryan. Headsight is a helmet that utilizes a video screen and tracking system linked to a closed circuit camera system. It was initially meant for dangerous circumstances that may involve the user needing to defend oneself. Even though it is well known that zombies only eat brains, it is always good to take precautions. The user can observe the environment outside of their home for intruders, just with a turn of their head.

The concept of Ultimate Display was invented by Ivan Sutherland who is widely recognized as the ‘pioneer of computer graphics’. Ultimate Display describes the idea of HMD being able to replicate reality to the point in which the user would be unable to differ. Mr. Ivan Sutherland’s composition is regarded as the primary blueprint for VR for years to come.

That blueprint came into a reality with The Sword of Damocles, the first virtual reality HMD. This HMD is a head mount connected to a computer that reveals to the user various perspectives as they move their heads. Then 1969 arrived with the invention of ‘artificial reality’ experience by Myron Krueger. He fostered virtual environments that reacted to people within them. That’s when Myron Krueger’s first VR platform comes in.

In 1975, Myron Krueger designed VIDEOPLACE, the first interactive VR platform which utilized video cameras, projectors, computer graphics and position-sensing technology. This room was enormous, pitch-black and did not use goggles or gloves. When a person walks in, the first thing they see is their computer-generated reflections in which the users’ actions are filmed on camera and transmitted onto the shadow. The coolest thing about this experience is that a user could see other individuals’ silhouettes if there are multiple rooms and interact with them.

History of VR in the 1980’s

In 1982, gloves for virtual reality were finally invented. These gloves were called Sayre gloves, the first wired gloves for VR. The inventors of the Sayre gloves are named Daniel J. Sandin and Thomas DeFanti. The idea of Sayre gloves came from Richard Sayre, a close colleague. In creating the Sayre gloves, Daniel J. Sandin and Thomas DeFanti used the start of gesture recognition through light emitters and photocells. This was used to overlook hand movements in the gloves. So when the fingers in the glove shifts, the light hitting the photocells converts the physical activity into electrical signals. Now both a VR headset and wired gloves can be sold as a pair.

VPL Research Inc., founded by Jaron Lanier, is the first company to sell VR goggles and gloves. In the 1980s, Lanier devoted his career studying alternative approaches to the fundamentals of physics; heterogeneous scientific simulations, fundamentals of physics and advanced information systems for medicine. VPL Research Inc. resided at the outskirts of Lanier’s cottage in Palo Alto, around the San Francisco Bay Area. VPL Research, Inc sold VR products called the DataGlove, EyePhone, AudioSphere, Isaac, and Body Electric.

One day, NASA found VR in the skirts of the 1980s. In 1989, NASA was developing VIEW, Virtual Environment Workstation Project, as a VR simulator for aspiring astronauts. However, they were missing the element of sound in their project. So they turned to Scott Foster, who had just founded Crystal River Engineering Inc. In this way, real-time binaural 3D audio processing was made.

History of Virtual Reality in the 1990’s

It’s impressive how space and VR could come together at such an early stage in the history of VR. Yet, the outcomes were extraordinary. In 1991, a VR system, Computer Simulated Teleoperation, was invented to outline a robot rover’s route from Earth to Mars. Antonio Medina, a NASA scientist and inventor of Computer Simulated Teleoperation, also helped launch VR arcade machines.

These arcade machines would have players immersed into 3D gaming. It was VR’s first mass production in the entertainment industry. Even SEGA, a gaming business, announced their efforts in creating the ‘SEGA VR headset’. This would allow VR to be dispersed in society for common use. In 1944, SEGA ended up releasing the SEGA VR-1, a motion simulator arcade machine.

Closing in on the end of the 1900s, Nintendo jumps in just in time to join the fun. Nintendo releases Virtual Boy console, a system that plays 3D monochrome video games, to the public. What was significant about this console was that it was not only portable, but it could display 3D graphics. Virtually Reality has come so far throughout the 1900s, and the growth only continues in a new era.

The History Of VR In The Early 2000’s

In 2007, Google introduces Street View as “a virtual representation of our surroundings,” (www.google.com/streetview/). A company called Immersive Media was the first contractor to photograph imagery of several cities in a moving car. Then when 2010 hit, Google created a third dimensional form of Street View.

That same year an 18 year old entrepreneur named Palmer Luckey invented the first prototype of the Oculus Rift headset. Honestly, his bank must be looking like phone numbers because Oculus Rift has an estimated net worth of $700 million according to Forbes magazine. In 2012, Mr. Luckey started a campaign for the Oculus Rift which got the ball rolling for his successful career.

However, just as suddenly Mr. Luckey gained his success, he sold Oculus Rift to Facebook for $2 billion. From that moment, VR rapidly gained a large popularity of VR. High-level businesses such as Sony, Google, and Samsung started to create outstanding products with Oculus Rift such as the Samsung Gear VR and the Project Morpheus.

Virtual Reality in The Future

As with all things, history matters, but the future matters more. While the history of virtual reality has been explored, it’s important to look at where we are going – tomorrow. Virtual Reality has skyrocketed in mainstream media these past couple of years, creating a fun and immersive experience for users all around the world. The history of virtual reality has truly taken today’s society to the next level. VR has dived into multiple industries such as the military, sports, medical, education, and even fashion.

Military

No one would’ve thought that VR could be used in the military, yet now the United States and the UK have invested VR tech into their soldiers. In addition, the use of VR reduces the costs of training as the VR is the least susceptible to constant repairs. The trainees are able to undergo numerous simulations that prepare them for realistic scenarios they might face on the battlefield. This gives each individual scores based on how well they do. VR is utilized in multiple branches of the military such as the army, navy, air force, marines and coast guard.

In these sectors, soldiers undergo “flight simulations, battlefield simulations, medic training, and vehicle simulations”(https://www.fdmgroup.com/5-exciting-uses-for-virtual-reality/). A specific example would be Striker VR, which is used to train soldiers in their shooting skills. A soldier would have a VR Gun strapped to them at practice. Hence, they can commence in using a various number of effects called single shot, out-of-ammo, three round burst, chainsaw, pulse rifle replicants.

Sports

The usage of virtual reality in sports have been for training, watching live games, and training teams. When Super Bowl season comes around, football fans from all across the globe curse out the never-ending commercials. They’d constantly argue about which team is going to win that particular year. These fans are the ones who wish that they are at the field, fully immersed into the experience.

A VR set can allow a fan of any sport to have the most realistic experience observing a game while lounging on the couch. This is not limited to VR from a player’s perspective. Particularly in Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games partnered with NBC and BBC with a VR coverage of the action. Since it was just an experiment, the footage of the game was unavailable until the following day. Regardless, that began the growth of virtual reality in sports and partnerships with the NBA, the ICC, and even the NASCAR Race.

Medicine

Today, experts claim that virtual reality can assist in the process of helping people have a healthy way of living. VR can be used to diagnose and treat mental or physical conditions. These medical conditions can range from something as small as social anxiety to Alzheimer’s disease. This VR therapy is still being tested to improve its accuracy. Hence, virtual reality is slowly making its way in therapeutic settings. This is where the term, exposure therapy comes into play.

Exposure therapy treats patients with anxiety disorders by placing them in virtual environments that are anxiety inducing. This is continuous until the patient grows to find what they are scared of, is not so scary anymore. VR is opening a new way of mental healing. In addition, VR is being used to treat mental illnesses like alcohol addiction, claustrophobia and teenage depression. Researchers suggest that VR can assist in diagnosing people of all ages for conditions like schizophrenia, ADHD and autism.

Education

Education is what takes society into the future. Today virtual reality has entered school systems to enhance the learning of the future generations. It has become revolutionary for teachers and students alike in changing the old school system. As most people learn better by doing instead in a chair all day, discovering an innovative way to absorb information can engage learners into their lessons. Today, students can take a field trip to the Abraham Lincoln monument and suddenly to the dinosaur age in a flash. All this is possible with virtual reality and Google.

Google created Google Expedition to allow the user to travel worldwide with just their cell-phone. Currently, Google has more than 1 million students used their app in 11 countries on their own virtual quests. Studies have shown virtual reality can be used as a positive influence towards children with distinct disorders. Floreo, a tech company, used their services to assist children with Autism spectrum disorders and improve their social skills. VR seems to have no limit in what it can do for so many types of people.

Fashion

The idea of Virtual Reality within the fashion industry can take consumers feet away from models on a run way. It altogether eliminates the cost of having to travel far and wide to attend such expensive shows. In 2017, “Dreaming of Italy” show took place, in which people had the chance to be virtually present for the show. This fantastic fashion show was filmed in Milan a week prior to the actual event. A viewer could walk around and observe the different articles of clothing.

Additionally, Brand owners could showcase their business without direct confrontation with other human beings. Therefore, fashion in VR could expand to even more people drawing in more customers. Customers allow brands to collect data on what they are most attracted to or allow them to make better future decisions when it comes to their design. This includes brands like Coach, Gap and Tommy Hilfiger who wish to bring awareness to their brand and increase sales. Furthermore, in case people did not get a chance to attend the event, VR is an awesome alternative.

Challenges Of Virtual Reality

Every field has their quirks and setbacks. Virtual Realities’ constant issue is creating a further organic experience than the last as well as decreasing the number of tools to do it. Virtual Reality has reportedly caused health related concerns such as headaches, eye strain, dizziness and nausea. To deal with these types of concerns that customers have, developers choose to completely eliminate induced motion that may lead to those symptoms. Throughout the history of virtual reality, there have been concerns about what the health effects might be on the human body.

However, this leads to the creativity ‘switch’ to be flipped off due to the eliminating certain features of VR. So ultimately it’s time to figure out a balance that accommodates both the consumer and the developers. In that same sense, to gain popularity developers create VR set versions of existing tv shows and games. Virtual Reality was originally made to enhance what already exists, but what if abstract imagination could be enhanced as well?

The topic of virtual crimes has been a popular subject to discuss. With the human mind being an ultimate source of imagination, the freedom that virtual reality possesses may lead society into a negative rabbit hole. Virtual Reality may lead users to perform what they’ve seen in movies, television, and books: robbery, murder, and molestation. Would any of this be deemed a crime, if it is virtual? That question is discussed frequently as it has a possibility of becoming a reality.

The Importance Of Virtual Experience

The goal in life for society is to evolve in some sort of shape or form. Virtual reality is evidence of this increasing growth. Virtual reality allows what is limited in the real world to be unlimited in an imagined world. This concept has improved society by creating a way to interact with other human beings in a more personalized fashion. A great example would be that people of all ages can connect their VR on twitch and can connect with other gamers all around the world.

The history of virtual reality has paved a way for new bonds and memories to form in the comfort of one’s home. People can sit down at a cafe, go on dates, and even have a mini dance party with friends. Especially with the conditions that COVID-19 has forced the world to endure, it opens a way for friends to still connect with each other, following social distancing regulations. As time passes, the world marches forward visualizing its’ highest form of self.

What Are Some Real World Uses for Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality, known simply as VR, is a recent innovation in the rapidly expanding world of technology. It can simply be explained as a simulation in three dimensions of images that are real or appear to be real. The simulation is created by a computer. But, what are some real world uses for virtual reality?

The user experiences VR either through a head-mounted display (HMD) or gloves with sensors. The screen may recreate an island, or it creates something fictional like a planet. Instead of watching the screen, the user appears to be inside the screen. The experience involves sight, hearing, and touch. Its only limits are the power of the computer and the created content. When the user turns their head, the screen moves in the same direction. To the user, it is real.

There is virtually no limit to its development. More companies are entering the field developing new hardware and experiences. VR seems like a fascinating experience for a game or fun, but what are real world uses for VR. This article will delve into those applications. This is not an exhaustive list. As the technology grows and changes, more people will realize the true value of VR.

But, what are some real world examples of virtual reality? Well, we’re glad you asked!

VR IN THE MILITARY

The military is one arena that is taking VR to new heights. The Army can use the technology to experience battlefield situations without the risk of injury. The content can run an almost endless number of scenarios that might occur either in battle or in preparation for combat. Not only is risk eliminated, but the cost is greatly diminished. Soldiers can experience the world without leaving a room. There are some segments of military world who are actually creating their own VR gear that can be used for training, simulation, and much more.

It is great training for new recruits. It also provides refresher courses for soldiers with real life experiences. Finally, VR provides the means to introduce new weapons and ideas without the necessity and expense of building real world structures. There will also be times when VR is the only way to recreate the battlefield.

The Air Force uses VR for flight simulations. It can be pilots flying transport planes into war zones or fighter pilots tasked with avoiding missiles or engaging other jets. This training saves money and avoids risk which is a common theme with VR. All pilots need to constantly update their skills. In addition, a pilot checked out in one aircraft needs additional training to be proficient in another plane. These uses of VR in the real world are amazing!

COMMERCIAL AIRLINES USING VIRTUAL REALITY

Commercial airline pilots do not normally have to worry about missiles and enemy fighters. The do, however, have challenges flying in bad weather or landing under unusual circumstances. VR allows this training. It also allows these pilots to experience new technology in their planes without having to take the planes up in the air.

An example would be a commercial pilot who is now going to be landing at an unfamiliar airport. He or she can practice different approaches to the airport, landing on the runways, and taking off in all possible scenarios. The pilot will then a feeling of having been there before when they land at the real location.

Hopefully, commercial pilots will never have to encounter these events in real life. If they do, they will be prepared. They can remember their VR experience and proceed accordingly.

VIRTUAL REALITY IN MEDICINE

Medical training is real life. It is in some ways like the military uses. Students can experience treating patients without having to use live people. The same theory that applies to new doctors also involves experienced surgeons. They can have the chance to operate in VR. The patients are not real. They do appear to be real, and the surgeon operates in a virtual reality setting. They can experience what works and what does not.

A new surgical technique can be tried and learned in VR. Different ideas can be used to accomplish the same goal. A surgeon can expand his or her world without entering the operating room. This is a use that has no limits.

VIRTUAL REALITY IN SCHOOLS

Training and education are not limited to the military and medicine. Classroom teachers can use VR in many ways. A field trip to a museum can now be undertaken without ever leaving the classroom. A study of the solar system takes on new meaning when each student enters the virtual reality of the planets. A student can see up close what each planet looks like and how it orbits the sun. It certainly beats looking at a drawing on the board.

Students can interact with each other in the screen in a variety of educational endeavors. Teachers can create any situation that allows students to broaden their horizons.

VR IN THE BUSINESS WORLD

Businesses are using VR in many settings. It can be a tool for recruitment. A potential employee could be given a written test as a means of evaluation. They could now be placed in a VR setting to see how they react and perform. The content could be an actual event that has occurred in the company. It would be placing the recruit in a trial run at the firm without actually doing so.

Workers in a firm can use VR to collaborate with fellow employees on projects. They do not have to be in the same physical location. They can be in other states or countries. This will allow for exchange of ideas. It is also a means of spotting business trends. There is probably no limit to what a creative company can devise.

A business such as a grocery store can use VR to create a virtual layout of the store. They can move items around to determine the best location. All of this can happen without having to move the real products in their business. They can place signs in different locations within the business and see how they look. A department store can move merchandise to see what works best when attracting the customer’s attention.

VIRTUAL REALITY AND THE MANAGEMENT OF PAIN

Pain is a powerful force. It originates in a part of the body but is experienced in the mind. A patient can wear a HMD, and their mind can be distracted from the pain. This can be used by cancer patients, anyone suffering from severe burns, and any other chronic pain It would be meditation with a headset.

There is another place where pain is common. That location is the dentist chair. Some dentists are putting a HMD on a patient to distract them while teeth are pulled or a root canal is performed. Again the idea is for the patient to retreat into the screen and forget they are in the dental chair. It can be a possible alternative to pain killers.

VIRTUAL REALITY TREATMENTS FOR MENTAL HEALTH

Mental health can be a difficult area to treat. VR is now being utilized in these areas. They are many possibilities. One involves anxiety. Some people have situations that create great fear. They avoid them at all costs. VR allows the patient to address whatever causes their anxiety in an artificially created environment. They can realize that their anxiety need not be a condition that restricts their life. Once they handle the anxiety in VR, they are ready to go into the real world. Although there are some noted side effects of virtual reality, it’s ability to treat mental health disorders is definitely an exciting area for future growth.

Think of a person who for whatever reason is afraid to go to a library. Just the thought creates great anxiety. In virtual reality they enter a library. They can then realize that it is not as scary as they think. In time they may be able to enter a real library rather than a virtual one.

Another mental health issue is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Most people think of the mental health problem as one suffered by soldiers in combat. Other individuals can have the disorder. A person in a terrible automobile accident can suffer just as much. A victim of physical or sexual abuse also falls in this category. In each case, VR can recreate the circumstances that caused the problem. With medical help, the person can learn how to cope with this medical condition.

Autism is a medical condition that seems to be more common. The simple explanation of autism is the lack of social skills. It is much more complicated but a person who is autistic wants to withdraw from society. They cannot interact with other people. VR allows the person to interact and develop those skills. This is somewhat like anxiety. It is just a fear of the unknown. A person can move around in a screen without fear. It can allow the medical provider to address the issues involved.

Autistic individuals tend to avoid eye contact. It makes them uncomfortable. VR allows the person, usually a child, to learn how to look at a person in the safe setting of the screen. It is all part of the expanding world of treating mental conditions.

VR IN THE SPORTS WORLD

The sports world has embraced VR. A team can set a content for a player to experience over and over. It might be a batter in baseball or a basketball player shooting foul shots. Another possibility is an injured athlete being able to perform in VR when they could not do so in real life due to the injury.

There is also the possibility of a real game being made available in VR. A spectator could experience the reality of attending the game in person. It might seem like the individual would know they are not really at the game. Improvements in VR would most likely blur the distinction to the point it will be hard to tell what is real and what is virtual.

JUST FOR FUN

Real world uses would not be complete without the mention of fun. Leisure activities and vacations are part of life. A person can take a trip to Paris or anywhere else they have also wanted to visit. Businesses can offer this perk for their employees. The possibilities are endless.

This article has touched on many of the real world uses for virtual reality. Two common threads run through all the applications. Those points are risk and cost. Virtual reality removes the risk to the user. It also drastically reduces the cost to the organization or person utilizing the technology. The cost will only come down in the future. The elimination of risk will become an accepted part of the experience. Real world uses for VR will only continue to grow and expand in the foreseeable future.

What Are the Side Effects of Virtual Reality or VR?

So you want to try virtual reality (or VR for short)? Have you heard about the potential side effects of VR? Many view virtual reality as no different than any other video game platform, possibly better in the sense that it will allow for people to be more active with their bodies. The negative health effects of sitting for long periods while playing classic video games is well studied, but there are also negative side effects of VR.

Immersive Virtual Reality

In this post we will focus on virtual reality in the immersive form. This is similar to the type of VR the Oculus Rift/Quest uses, these devices are meant to use most of your senses and immerse your experience into simulated sensory devices.

Virtual Reality headsets like the Oculus Rift are made up of a few main components. There are two controllers called “touch” and the main headset. These components are what translate your natural senses into a virtual environment.

Why Virtual Reality?

While we go much deeper into the real world uses of virtual reality in this post, here is a quick overview:

Entertainment-Extension of established platforms
Virtual Reality exists to some degree already in the form of simulated worlds on your computer screen. The most popular kind is “Second Life”, a place where users create their own environments, social norms, and appearance and are able to construct a “reality” in that world. Second Life/Linden Labs has extended to testing its online world into devices like the Oculus rift in order to make the world of Second Life more realistic.

Education
Virtual Reality is also extending from entertainment into educational environments as well. The push stems from the balance of learning from rote and theoretical understanding into a digested sensory experience. The closest students can get to being able to gain experience without errors is in a simulated environment. For example, VR is heavily pushed in the medical sciences due to its ability to reduce risk to students of surgery when gaining experience with operation procedures. VR has gone as far to replicate tactile force and “touch” that helps students gain a realistic feeling while engaged in a virtual procedure.

Rehabilitation
Physical Therapy for those who have lost motor abilities can be aided by virtual reality treatments. Impairments following a traumatic brain injury, for example can make simple gross and fine motor actions limited. Virtual Reality in physical rehabilitation has helped in reactivating areas in the brain that re-train the cognitive impairments. Although this can be achieved in person, the recording process may be more exact when utilizing virtual reality.

The Dark side of Virtual Reality

So far we have reviewed what virtual reality is, some of the most common ways in which it is applied currently, and why many are very positive about its contribution to society. Although virtual reality is very exciting and creates avenues for entertainment, learning, and health that were not possible before, every added benefit comes with a deficiency in another area as well.

This article hopes to expound on some of these costs as negative effects are less talked about and often passed over in the effort to gain traction with this new technology. There are many side effects connected to the use of virtual reality, some are immediate, and a cause for more concern, and many effects are yet to be seen.

Editor’s Note: Read Our Article On How to Get Started With VR

Some effects not only affecting physical health but the psyche as well. There is still ongoing research on its effect on human development and maintenance or inhibition of sensory homeostasis. Most of the effects listed apply to immersive VR, although some
may apply to more “mild” forms of VR as well.

Side Effects of Virtual Reality

Balance and Orientation

Your brain utilizes the vestibular system for spatial orientation. It achieves this from the inner ear to the cerebral cortex – helping you orient your head position, posture, and balance your sensory equilibrium according to the environment around you.

Virtual Reality seeks to mimic the environment through auditory, visual, and tactile replication of a real environment.

One of the first issues with spatial orientation come with accidents and falls that occur when a virtual reality user becomes immersed in the environment to the point the real environment outside of the headset becomes a hazard. People can trip over objects and even incur serious injuries if they use VR in anything other than a mostly empty room.

It is actually recommended not to use virtual reality unsupervised, as even if you were in an empty room – the immersion can cause you to think you are moving in a direction you aren’t – and cause a fall.

Nausea

The orientation issues above also cause the feeling of motion sicknes/nausea for virtual reality users, now termed “cyber-sickness”. In severe cases the symptoms of dizziness can persist for more than one day if VR was used for longer than the recommended 30 minutes.

Sensory-spatial confusion merges into the next side effect:

The Illusion of Distance

Virtual Reality causes something called the vergence-accomodation conflict. Vergence movements are movements of the eye that are not at the same time, they are disconjugate. Vergence are accommodation eye movements when determining the distance of an object, however virtual reality is built on the illusion of distance alongside sensory immersion to make that distance seem real.

This causes a difficulty with determining true distance because you are still staring at a flat screen. What makes this a larger issue is the way this conflict affects the development of distance determination in children. For this reason, Virtual Reality is recommended for adults, but still not enough research has been done to determine whether vergence-accomodation conflict has long term effects on adults as well.

Conversely, for individuals already having balance issues, some rehabilitation centers are utilizing VR immersion for vestibular rehabilitation. In the same way that VR can be destabilizing, it is shown that if you already have an issue – it can aid in the re-acclimation of this balance technique.

Eye Strain & Myopia

Opthalmic issues extend into virtual reality as well. In 2016 the journal of Opthalmology published a study reporting that as much as 40% of the population has nearsightedness/myopia. It was also projected that by 2050 this would increase to 50% of the population. The journal said this was likely partially correlated to the increased use of screens.

What causes eye strain during Virtual Reality?

Eye strain is an extended effect from the vergence-accomodation eye convergence issue. The brain is faced with realistic presentation through a flat surface – causing the eye to constantly re-focus and re-orient to adapt to the unnatural illusion.
For this reason, only sessions of half an hour are recommended when using VR.

Photo-sensitivity

Those who are already prone to seizures are strongly discouraged from using VR due to its ability to provoke epileptic episodes in those with predispositions. This is one of the less widespread effects of VR, but very serious.

Psychological Effects of Virtual Reality

So far we have covered mainly physical side effects of virtual reality technology. Although this sector of research is still growing, it is important to also note that VR tricks your brain into a dual reality scenario. This in mind, given the graphics are rendered to mimic reality well – your brain may also record some of the images as if they were real.

This is more of a personal responsibility factor, it is possible if an image is felt throughout the senses in a realistic way and causes a psychological disturbance, to develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms if the image was too violent.

The negative side of VR is apparent when it changes your real life emotional state and overall interactions with others in the real world. As with most entertainment, The key with using Virtual Reality is to use it responsibly as a mild escape, rehabilitation services, education, but not a true alternate reality replacing existing in a true environment.