French startup tests VR in hospitals as anesthetic replacement

A French startup is exploring the use of (VR) virtual reality in hospitals as an alternative to anesthetics for minor operations, reporting “positive” feedback from early trials.  

Healthy Mind, the brainchild of three graduates in collaboration with psychiatrists and doctors, uses virtual environments to help ease the pain of smaller operations without the use of drugs while reducing the anxiety commonly felt in hospital environments.

From “Zen gardens” to snow-capped vistas,...

By Mark Jones, 11 June 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, Research.

New report highlights recent trends and threats in the global VR headsets market

A new report by QYResearchReports.com has outlined the challenges as well as trends associated with the global VR headsets market and offered a detailed analysis of the future growth opportunities.

“Global Virtual Reality Headsets Sales Market Report 2018” aims to reinforce the decision-making capacity of readers, potential investors and new entrants in the VR headset market by offering them with financial performance reports of prominent players, their M&A strategy news, the challenges they...

By James Bourne, 25 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Hardware, Research.

AR/VR consumer content and apps market hit $3.2 billion in 2017

The AR and VR consumer market swelled by an impressive 72% in 2017 to reach a value of $3.2 billion, according to analysis from IHS Markit.

Key factors in this growth are a steadily increasing user base that is proving happy to put more of their money into the ballooning number of content, apps and location-based VR entertainment. While VR is likely to remain a fairly niche market for the next few years, IHS Markit still sees it hitting 75.7 million users by 2021.

In terms of user numbers though, it seems...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 12 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Research.

Researchers test whether VR can treat phantom pain

Phantom pain is a strange phenomena whereby someone who has recently lost a limb continues to feel pain that seems to be coming from the missing limb itself. The condition can often compound the anguish that can come when a person loses part of their body.

As well as trying to understand why phantom pain occurs, scientists have been trying to find an effective way to treat the condition. Researchers at the University of Brunswick’s Institute of Biomedical Engineering are studying whether VR can help...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 02 March 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Research.

Scientists use VR to identify areas of brains involved in memory

Neuroscientists at the University of California have used VR to gain new insight into how different areas of the brain are involved in the distinct parts of the memory organisation process.

The findings are detailed in a study published in the Nature Communications journal by graduate student Halle Dimsdale-Zucker. Dimsdale-Zucker and her colleagues used a virtual environment to show participants virtual objects.

When the subjects were then asked about the objects, the team was able to view activity in different areas of...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 29 January 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Research.

$2.5 billion invested in AR/VR in 2017

2017 has been a bumper year in terms of investment for the AR/VR sector, and the pace of money coming in has picked up substantially in the last quarter.

According to the latest figures in Digi-Capital’s Augmented/Virtual Reality Report and Deals Database, startup leaders across 27 AR/VR sectors raised $1 billion in capital in Q4 2017. This brings total investment in 2017 to $2.5 billion in 2017, meaning that a whopping two-fifths of the total investment in the sector has come in October and...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 14 December 2017, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Research.

VR industry leaders launch world’s first ‘Academic Purpose’ bundle

VR First is a global initiative that aims to enable global innovation in VR/AR by providing creators, companies and governments with state-of-the-art facilities.

Now the group, along with a team of industry leaders, have announced the launch of the world’s first VR Academic Purpose bundle. This bundle consists of hardware, services and support from key players in the industry, and is designed specifically for academic research, development and innovation purposes.

The bundle will be made available to...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 08 December 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Research.

Pioneering VR hopes to help Cystic Fibrosis patients

Patients at the All Wales Adult Cystic Fibrosis Centre have had access to potentially revolutionary VR treatment, and the initial results seem to be positive.

The centre has partnered with Cardiff-based Orchard Media and Events Group to try and change the way that patients are treated. Currently, due to the threat of infection, patients have to be treated in isolation. This can cause additional anxiety and pain for people who are already under a heavy burden.

The new solution allows patients to don VR...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 01 December 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Research.

New research could put an end to queasy VR experiences

New research from the UK and Germany that was looking for a way to provide quicker and visually sharper experiences, may have uncovered something even more desirable: a path towards eliminating nausea-inducing VR experiences.

Conducted by researchers at Brunel University London and Bonn-Rhein-Sieg University of Applied Sciences and Saarland University in Germany, the project seems to have unearthed the “sweet spot” of image quality.

VR can make users sick, mainly due to latency between eye...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 01 November 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Research.

VR brings our 30,000-year old Homo sapiens ancestors back in 3D for the first time

VR animation by Visual Science

Technology continues to bring the history of our planet and our species into dazzlingly sharp relief. What before was a murky and often hard to conceptualise swamp is fast becoming a beautiful and detailed panorama.

Now, Visual Science is using VR to bring us face to face to with our distant ancestors. Partnering with the RAS Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, the company has reconstructed the faces of the Sungir...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 11 October 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Research.