What is the Meaning of VR? And how will it be Important in the Metaverse?

Photo by Remy Gieling

What is the Meaning of VR? And how will it be Important in the Metaverse?

The meaning of VR is multi-faceted. Virtual reality is the creation of a virtual artificial environment by a computer. VR uses sensory stimuli to map your actions in a virtual world. VR comes under the multi-faceted umbrella of extended reality/ XR, encompassing other techs such as augmented reality.

Currently, several devices and companies have invested in virtual reality.

Such examples include PlayStation with gaming VR headsets and Meta with Oculus headsets (Meta Quest). Meta specifically (previously Facebook) has invested heavily in VR to expand its metaverse offering.

Meta recently released a Meta specific experience named Horizon worlds, enabling users to interact virtually with friends and coworkers. Although praised for the innovative use of the Oculus technology, Horizon worlds were criticized for its latency problems and poor connectivity.

Horizon Worlds was a step towards Meta’s idea of what they believe the metaverse to be, that being a fully virtual world that they see as the future of reality. As a result, VR will play a crucial role in developing these virtual worlds.

Gaming metaverses like The Sandbox are beginning to test the use of using VR within their worlds, but currently, the technology isn’t quite there for full adoption. As Sebastien Borget said during our interview with him at the NFC conference in Lisbon:

“We aim to make The Sandbox as accessible as possible to everyone. We started with PC and Mac, and because of accessibility, we will begin on mobile next. Then afterward, we’re keen to explore other more immersive ways to interact on a 2d screen showing 3d content in AR and VR, which would require additional experiments. “

“But right now, we feel the technology isn’t quite ready at that scale to justify being fully focused on that.”

Thus, further technology development is needed for increased adoption and, in turn, awareness. Currently, prereferral devices and controllers that track external movement are holding back these headsets. In the future, we should expect to see this vanish as technology improves. Something which will not only benefit consumers but businesses as well that want to make full use of the technology, without having to be restricted by current hardware.

Although virtual reality consists mostly of gaming experiences, VR is moving quickly into other entertainment and lifestyle genres. Specifically, virtual reality is being adopted heavily in the fitness industry, with apps such as FIT XR utilizing extended reality technologies to improve users’ fitness.

Likewise, VR is being adopted by the military and embraced by health care, with the technology being used to help with training purposes, such as when preparing for surgical operations. We already see law enforcement use VR technology in tackling crime; it’s only a matter of time before this becomes widespread.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the meaning of VR can often be confusing for many. But that is not because the concept of VR is hard but because VR can be used for many different applicational processes. In the future, as we see technology improve, it will become one of the main tentpoles of the metaverse.

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