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VR / AR Solutions for Events
New technology means more innovative ways to engage audiences. Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are now terms that we hear almost everywhere, not just in the gaming realm but also in events!
Creatively using immersive technology like VR and AR excites your audience, increasing the traffic to your event booth or pop-up launch. They also make your event a much more unique and memorable experience, leading to higher retention and brand recall.
So, what exactly are VR and AR, and how can we use them in events?
Virtual Reality VS Augmented Reality
Virtual Reality refers to the computer-generated simulation of a 3D image or environment where users can completely immerse themselves in.
The physical interaction with this simulated world usually requires electronic equipment such as goggles, a full headset and controller system. Hand-motion capture nodes may also be installed around the room for interaction with objects in the digital space.
Augmented Reality is similar to Virtual Reality, but instead of creating a totally different world, it adds to what already exists. It creates a composite view of a computer-generated image and the real world, commonly used through smartphone applications. Some popular examples of AR uses would be Pokemon Go and Instagram Story filters.
Here are some ways you can use VR and AR to spice up your events:
Ways to Use VR or AR at Live Events
1) Virtual Demonstrations
With VR or AR, your event would not be “all talk and no action”. For instance, if you are launching a new product, VR could help to promote it through virtual demonstrations at a trade show.
This can be commonly seen in the auto industry, where VR is used to showcase new car models that have not been released. Users can put on goggles to view the new models in an up-close and personal manner, and even use VR handsets to open car doors and do a test drive virtually.
And when organising training sessions such as auto and aero training, you can consider using training simulations to virtually demonstrate how certain equipment can be used, without bringing large and expensive machines to the event! Users can also practise their decision-making skills without the fear of making serious mistakes. Such virtual training encounters can also test your audience’s reflexes, creating more buzz and excitement.
To raise awareness of a product through AR, you can develop an application to help your audience find out more while entertaining them. For instance, guests of an exhibition could download your application to have 2D artworks turn into a pop-up gallery.
Interactive AR models can also be set-up to accompany speeches. Your speakers can explain products and services with the visuals of AR to help your audience visualise and better understand your designs in a unique way.
2) Virtual Tours
Virtual tours display a location through VR and transport your audience to an entirely different place. By putting on a VR headset, they can go on digital hiking trails and visit far-flung places on the other side of the world! These virtual tours are sometimes done through 360-degree images or videos.
This could be helpful in conferences and seminars, when you would like to show your guests another setting beyond the four walls. Without stepping out of your event room, your audience can have a tour of apartments, land plots, hotels, or any other destinations depending on the goal of your event.
And at a busy trade show or exhibition, VR can also be used to provide a more peaceful atmosphere for the attendees who may want a break from the hustle and bustle. Users can be transported to a relaxing beach or take a calming walk in nature for a couple of minutes.
Besides giving a tour of a different venue, VR can also bring your user to another event! To hype up a corporate event, you can use VR to simulate a live concert or sports event where users can stand among an audience in a mosh pit and jump and cheer along. You can also use VR renders of your past shows to help users who had missed previous events to experience the event atmosphere once more.
Events can be serious without being boring – add some fun to your seminar by developing games! All sorts of games can be organized for your guests with VR and AR.
The most interactive VR experiences would usually require headsets, joysticks, controllers and external sensors. To engage your audience, the games should be challenging but still easy to understand. For example, the rules of shooting games can be picked up easily and such games are commonly used in VR. Racing games in which the drivers wear a VR headset to simulate sitting inside a car are also possible.
Meanwhile, games that involve AR are more accessible and available to users. For example, in a game of Treasure Hunt, attendees can simply use their own smartphones to scan QR codes placed around your venue to find objects!
Using VR / AR to Enhance Events Experience
With VR and AR gears available all around us, setting up a VR or AR booth is a rather easy process. But when you are developing the simulation, virtual demonstration or game, it would be best to approach developers who can help you create the visual that best suits your event. Be sure to also have trained staff who are familiar with the equipment to help solve problems should any arise!
Regardless of how you are carrying out your VR or AR activities, these new technologies are opportunities to impress your audience. Use your creativity to create novel and exciting experiences!