How does virtual reality function? This is a common question, so we will explore the answer to this question in detail and everything regarding virtual reality.
Virtual reality is experiencing a new environment that does not exist in reality. Being in virtual reality means that you are in a virtual world rather than sitting at a screen like a conventional computer.
We can experience virtual reality through the 3D modeling and simulation done on a computer and it also engages the user to interact with the artificial 3D environment. Virtual reality can include up to 4 to 5 senses depending on the level of programming and simulation. These senses include hearing, vision, touch, and if you go to an extent then might even smell.
Visual & Audio
But most of the current virtual reality devices mainly consists of visual and audio experiences that might not be enough for a perfect virtual world. The developers are working and have come up with a new technology that is known as the haptic system. The haptic system will allow the user to experience force feedback through proper gadgets and devices.
Generally, force feedback haptic system is really important especially for medical and gaming applications. Force feedback devices will enhance the experience of the user as it will allow the user to pick things up in the virtual world and manipulate the position of objects. It can be done using tactile or haptic gloves.
Early Stages of Virtual Reality Development
By doing some research we have found that the first form of virtual reality device was invented by Morton Heilig. It was a device in which the user sits in front of it and has a screen on all four sides. The user watches a film that is combined with the experience of senses including vision, hearing, and smell. Since then virtual reality is improving every day and has outdated digital computers.
The head-mounted display was first introduced by two developers Bob Sproull and Ivan Sutherland in 1968. They thought of bringing an immersive experience for the user. Where users can jump into the virtual world and isolate themselves from the real world.
It was a fascinating addition in the field of virtual reality. But the early editions of HMD (Head Mounted Device) were very heavy and had a very low resolution and simulation that it needed many improvements.
During the evolution of virtual reality after 1970, its main use was to train people in multiple fields. These fields mainly include medical training, military training and flight simulation purposes.
It was a huge success back in the day as no risk was taken to train the new staff about their respected fields. During this time, huge contributions were made by NASA that created navigable worlds for its laboratory.
These were some previous contributions to technology. Now, you might have got the idea, “how does virtual reality function in its early stages?”.
Virtual Reality Today
Over the last decade, virtual reality has developed and improved drastically. Providing users with an immersive experience of the virtual environment. But the consumers are still in thought about its hefty price tag.
A few of the amazing devices of the decade include Oculus Rift, Playstation VR, Google Cardboard, and Half Dome. With these inventions, we can probably see and predict the future of virtual reality that is pretty amazing and overwhelming.
Things That Make Virtual Reality Function Better
Virtual reality has taken over the technology. Providing people entertainment and as well as treatments to patients. It is working in almost every field where possible. But the main question that arises is, “How does virtual reality function?”.
It may seem like a pretty easy question, but its answer is quite long and detailed. The function of the virtual reality depends on many things. So, let us get in the depth of how virtual reality functions and what important things make the function of VR easy.
Field of View
FOV (field of view) plays an important role in the functionality of a VR device. A human eye is capable of much more FOV than a VR device can ever can. An average human eye can see up to 220-240 degree arc whereas most VR headsets support up to 114 degrees that enable the user to see objects in 3D. No VR headset can cover the full aspect of the FOV of a human eye. There are developments still in progress that will allow the user for a 180-degree FOV. It has a high resolution and high-performance VR simulation that enhances the experience of the user.
The frame rate of a virtual environment plays a vital role in the functionality of a VR device. Developers are still in the thought of how to deal with the frame rate of the virtual world. According to the researches of a human eye, we can conclude that a human eye can see up to 1000 frame rates per second (FPS). But there are still conflicts about this issue as a human brain does not process frames more than 150 FPS. The rest of the FPS whether it be 300,350 or much more is lost during the translation to the brain.
For a better VR experience, anything less than 60 FPS disrupts the image and cause the user headache or nausea. Below 60 FPS means there is less reality in the virtual world. This is the reason that developers target 90 FPS which enhances the VR experience and makes it more true to life experience. A company like Sony has set the bar of not accepting and certifying software for its VR devices below 60 FPS. It will help the user to experience a much more realistic virtual environment.
Sound effects are a crucial part of the functionality of a VR. It is important to create 3D sound effects so that the user can experience a sense of reality in the virtual environment. Spatial sound is being today to simulate a 3D audio effect that matches with the VR environment. If you have ever sat in a cinema hall, you know that sound effects highly depends on your seating position. Just like that VR needs to create an environment where the user can distinguish the direction from where the sound is coming.
It is important to note that for a VR headset the sound effects should work in real-time to sense the movement of the user and provide the perfect sound experience. As of today, VR is still in the development phase and has much more to come when it comes to the functionality of sound effects.
Position and Head Tracking
Position and head tracking are the core feature of VR functionality. They separate a VR from simple gaming and video experiences. There are two types of tracking systems mainly when it comes to VR. 3 DOF and 6 DOF. A degree of freedom defines the angles in which a VR can operate. Let us discuss the difference between these two and which increases the experience of better functionality of a VR device.
Smartphone VR headsets like Oculus Go and Samsung VR gear use 3 DOF. 3 degree of freedom means that the VR device can sense the movement of the head if you move your head left and right or up and down or tilt your head to any side. It won’t register the movement of your body. This is a restriction towards a more real experience of a VR environment.
Whereas a 6 DOF device can register all your movements whether it be your head, your body or point of the direction you are looking at. It has a touch or more real experience than a 3 DOF device. It also enables movement in a 3D space. Many of the companies that make a 6 DOF device incorporates the headset with an infrared sensor and camera to perfectly track and visualize the movement of the user.
These were the things that answer your question, “How does virtual reality function better?”
How Does Virtual Reality Function and Work?
We all know that virtual reality is a virtual environment that is made with the help of a computer. It drives the users into its immersive and mesmerizing experience. There are many VR devices and headsets that allow the user to do so. It is simply a 3D simulation of objects that developers put inside a virtual environment. Depending on the depth of simulation it may isolate the user from the real world.
As we all understand the basic concept of virtual reality. We should know what is necessary to make a virtual environment and a VR device. And how it works. Let us find out what technology is behind this immersive virtual world.
The basic objective of a VR is to simulate a more realistic vision for the user. Every VR headset develops an image or two and presents it in front of the eye, this helps in eliminating the interaction of the user from the real world. Now, auto-lenses are places between the eye that adjust the vision of the user by tracking the movement of the eye. The visual stimulation is rendered using a smartphone or through HDMI cable using a PC.
For an immersive and truly unforgettable experience, the virtual reality has some prerequisites. It includes having FPS more than 60, and a minimum 100º FOV with a supporting refresh rate. These are the requirements on which virtual reality works like a charm. If these things are not up to the requirement and if the latency is high, then the virtual environment can be sluggish and it will no render the simulation perfectly.
How Virtual Reality Function in Different Businesses?
Virtual reality has a vast field of network. It is operating in many industries at the same time and improving the business while having its perks. It enables a person to take his business to the next level and promote it using its features. Today, VR is working in every industry whether it be movies, games, healthcare, automotive, software industry as well as in the military. It allows the user and surrounding to be safe while experiencing reality via VR. Let us discuss some of the fields where VR is functioning successfully.
1- VR in Healthcare
Virtual reality is serving humanity by treating patients that are diagnosed with chronic diseases. It helps in training medical professionals where they can get hands-on experience by virtually treating a patient. Although they train under controlled settings many experts think that it is the best way to imply training without having the risk of any life. Further, many mental therapy platforms are now developed that can treat various mental problems.
VR in Enterprise
VR has a great scope in enterprises that aim to function smoothly and be present virtually at a place where you cannot reach in real life. It can also be used to train an individual for an interview or how to behave in a conference room full of professionals. With the help of VR, a huge amount of revenue can be saved as it reduces the frequent traveling of businessmen.
Sphericam 2, is specially designed for professional video makers. It is a 360-degree video camera that enhances the experience of virtual reality. It has many features that include 6K resolution, 60 FPS and 12K skill along with the ability to capture in RAW format. The robustness and agility of the product are to praise for. It allows the user to capture highly detailed video or image living up to its specifications.
VR In Gaming
Virtual reality gaming is a new era for gamers. Conventional gaming tools are getting obsolete and a more real-to-life experience is provided to the user. First, there were only senses of vision and hearing but as the technology is advancing it has improved and the senses are being added. These additions are a sense of touch and haptic feedback. Haptic feedback will allow the user to experience the feel from a virtual environment into the real world. By using gloves or tactile sensors, one can simply touch and feel objects that are virtually in front of the user.
Haptic feedback is an impeccable advancement in the field of virtual reality that has transformed virtual reality into a more realistic experience.
4- VR In Sports
Virtual reality in sports helps the user to train in many sports that include golf, cycling, skiing, running, etc. It also helps in measuring an athlete’s performance and analyzing techniques so the sportsman can learn from his mistakes. For example, a golfer is looking to improve his swings or a runner is trying to run faster along the tracks. The 3D technique helps the coach to judge the aspect of an athlete and pinpoint his mistakes.
Besides training a sport, VR also helps in providing the user with a closer look at the sports than ever. Enabling the user to sit at home and watching a live match in front of him. For example, walking through the closets of football players and watching the game from the front row.
What to Expect from VR in Future?
We can expect immense advancements to make a more realistic and immersive virtual environment. By looking at today’s progress, we can predict that giants like Google, Sony, Microsoft, and Oculus will bring an improvement in the VR technology. It is not far when we will experience a virtual environment more real than real-world itself.
There is a reason why we humans are soo obsessed with VR and new technologies as it is developing. It is simply because we have become lazy. We want to explore and conquer the world just by sitting at home. As claims are made about the future of VR that it will enter every industry including education and tourism. As VR will advance towards more reality, people will lack the dedication and motivation to do certain things in real life. Real-life things will not exist in the future. Of course, some of the future advancements will have a great impact on the lives of people but every benefit has its pros and cons.
Today, VR is mainly seen as gaming gear but it is not far when people will realize its importance. Some of the most tangible predictions about virtual reality are:
- VR will have a sense of touch using tactile gloves
- Virtual interaction through social media will be introduced
- VR headsets will slim down to as wearing sunglasses
- It will advance to a more real-life experience
Pros and Cons Of VR
As any technology develops, it has its pros and cons. Just like that, virtual reality is a developing technology that has a great impact on people. Although the cons of VR are very little than its benefits, let us dive into its pros. It gives the visualization of multiple countries where could not afford to go. VR helps in treating patients that suffer from anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. It also helps the clinical staff to get training for specific medical surgeries. Virtual reality enhances the gaming experience to its users by providing a more realistic experience.
Besides all its pros and benefit, the only con of virtual reality is its price. Because of its price, many people can unable to experience virtual reality. But shortly, as the technology is improving, we can expect that its prices will go down. VR headset size was a con previously but as more sleek and small size headsets are under development, so it is no longer a con.
The concept of virtual reality has come into existence with a bang. As it is still under development, we can expect it to improve and provide a great experience to its users. We have answered the most frequently asked question, “How does virtual reality function?”. There are many aspects to which the functionality of VR depends. It includes frame rate, refresh rate, sound effects, the field of view, and head and position tracking.
Although these may account for how virtual reality function. It is also important to know how it works. It is essential to understand the simulation behind the virtual environment and how it transforms into a real-world experience. VR has a great future ahead and according to the prediction, it will create a massive impact on every field.