Three new ways to use Virtual Reality

Three new ways to use Virtual Reality

Three new ways to use Virtual Reality

Even though most people still associate virtual reality with gaming, there are many other ways in which VR can be put to good use. Virtual reality offers a wide range of possibilities to present and simulate complicated concepts in order to make specific subjects and tasks easier to understand and execute. Below, we’ve listed three new ways in which virtual reality can be applied to other areas:

Virtual Reality in Healthcare

Healthcare has already become a very popular area for virtual reality development. It can be used to explain new techniques, help students acquire skills and improve diagnosis and treatment. A few highlights:

Medical training

VR is mainly popular because it offers a safe training environment without risking to cause any harm to patients. Some training tools use a simulated interactive environment, while others use real-world footage. Medical virtual reality tutorials provide a wonderfully flexible and cost-effective solution to train new students while reducing costs. Making use of real-world footage and presenting this in a 3D environment can make students feel more engaged. Especially offering first point-of-view in a VR tutorial is a unique possibility for students to see a surgery from a different (and very important) perspective.

Diagnostics

Virtual Reality can be used to improve diagnostics. It can, for example, help doctors to better interpret MRI scans. VR can bring additional insights that are difficult to achieve with 2D-images. In some situations, this can even remove the need for surgery or invasive procedures. If a surgery is still required, VR can also support pre-operative planning by making scans more insightful in a 3D environment.

Treatment

The VR approach is increasingly drawing interest to assist in the treatment of various conditions. Specialists have been developing VR tools for the treatment of various phobia[1], autism[2], disabilities[3] and PTSD[4]. Even though this is still preliminary, the research is very promising and

Virtual Reality in Business

Virtual Reality can play various roles in businesses. It can for example be used in the training of employees, for marketing ends or as a virtual tour of the business environment. Training of employees can be difficult to organise and costly as well. For example, when medical device companies want to train their sales staff in the use of a new device. If training is organised by the use of VR, there is no need to arrange group demonstrations and handle all the required logistics. In this case, employees can train themselves corresponding to their own schedule. When using Virtual Reality for marketing ends or in presenting the business environment, organisations can benefit of the “wow-effect” that Virtual Reality generates. Additionally, VR allows complete immersion of the customer in the marketing material which enables a unique opportunity of showing a possible customer the benefits of the product.

Virtual Reality in the training of drivers

Recently, UPS announced that they will add virtual reality to the training program of their drivers. The VR training will mainly be focused on identifying road hazards in a simulated 360-degree environment. The VR training will replace a touchscreen training module that UPS currently uses to train on road hazards. UPS states that “Virtual Reality offers a big technological leap in the realm of driver safety training” (Juan Perez, UPS chief information and engineering officer). They have created a “hyper-realistic streetscape” that vividly simulates the experience of driving, in a very memorable way. UPS currently implemented VR for the training of the drivers of package delivery trucks, but we can imagine that it might be very useful to implement it for technical staff as well.

We will also be present at the Transrail Connection event at the 8th-9th of November in Paris, to demonstrate the possibilities of VR in training railway drivers and technicians.

 

As you can see, Virtual Reality can do much more than might be thought of at first sight.

Want to know what Virtual Reality can do for your organisation? Contact us!

 

Written by Eline Lubbes

 

[1] Parsons, T. and Rizzo, A. (2008). Affective outcomes of vr exposure therapy for anxiety and specific phobias: A meta-analysis. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 39(3), pp.250-261.

[2] Parsons, S. and Mitchell, P. (2002). The potential of vr in social skills training for people with autistic spectrum disorders. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 46(5), pp.430-443.

[3] Laver, K., George, S., Thomas, S., Deutsch, J. and Crotty, M. (2011). VR for Stroke Rehabilitation. Stroke, 43(2), pp.e20-e21.

[4] Difedee, J. (2006). The Application of VR to the Treatment of PTSD Following the WTC Attack. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1071(1), pp.500-501.

 

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