An Introduction to VR Development

Keshav Jeet

Virtual reality has made it possible for people to enjoy and experience everything without leaving the comfort of their house. VR goggles have the potential to bring an entire set of reality in front of your eyes. Today, VR shown in movies is not a far-fetched dream anymore; it’s closer to becoming a reality.

From books to places, you can experience anything on a VR set wherever you are. You can place your foot on Mars, swim along with whales, and immerse yourself in space exploration projects. Kids can engage in education and learning by witnessing practical real-life examples using the VR set. Apart from these, the gaming industry has capitalized drastically on the VR boom. Racing, action, adventure games can now be played in first person with the actual experience. Simulators have been developed which makes people feel like they are actually in the game. Students can even experience college campuses on their VR set and make life-changing career decisions.

Even though these VR experiences aren’t pitch-perfect, they are interactive and highly engaging. But their continuous utilization enables developers to receive feedback and make rigorous improvements. Building a VR application can really benefit organizations, people, and society as a whole. It has capabilities and a community that is multiplying exponentially with each day.

Use cases of Virtual Reality

VR has several use cases in various industries. It is one of the important technologies that provide a real-time experience of far-away places and things. Implementing virtual reality has resulted in solving major problems. Some of the significant use cases of VR include:

◙ Gamification of VR
Immersive gaming is the benchmark when it comes to VR. Most people have been introduced to VR in the form of gaming. The VR gaming market has huge potential and is growing every day. Steam, the largest marketplace for games, reports that 4 million of its users own a VR device. There are VR amusement park chains like The Void and the Oriental Science Fiction Valley that combine technology with games to offer a high-quality experience.

◙ Marketing & Operations
VR is utilized for product demonstration, customer experience simulations, and operations. VR campaigns have created a lot of heat around different brands in the past. It is based on improving the overall experience of any product. The Vincent Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam offered a VR tour of the painter’s five popular paintings. It generated seven million views where all the five paintings could be seen in one place. It enabled people to see a 360-degree view of the museum without ever visiting the place.

◙ Retailing
Automobile manufacturers have used VR for a long time to test their vehicles. They offer VR technologies in their storefronts for the user to experience how the vehicle will feel like when they drive it. Purchasing a car is a budget heavy decision and giving an initial experience will help customers make a better decision. VR is also used to design store spaces and plan the infrastructure. 3D rendering is utilized to understand how merchandise should be placed in the store. Apart from this, it is replacing prototyping and designing physically which could take months to develop.

◙ Education and Learning
Education is another big market for virtual reality implementation. NASA uses virtual reality for virtual training which includes spacewalks, rescue operations, and the now famous, zero-gravity adaptation. Firefighters and police academies also utilize VR to train personnel on physically dangerous tasks. It helps them to understand quick decision-making without harming anyone in the process. VR cuts on costs as practical training required a lot of time and money while VR can simulate that experience on a plain ground.

◙ Travel
Traveling is one of the most soul-soothing VR experiences. People can climb Mt. Everest with the Everest VR tool or experience any other place in the world with Google Earth VR set. Traveling VR gear provides a pleasing experience to people without leaving the comfort of their homes. Companies are also capitalizing on the technology by providing a glimpse of travel plans and alluring customers to take that vacation. Virtual excursions provide the opportunity to excite customers and provide a real-life like experience. 

Understanding virtual reality development

VR development is no longer an unexplored territory. There are several tools and techniques available for developing VR at a lower level and under resources limitations. VR development is not an easy task but can be achieved with a basic understanding of the development phases and tools. 

◙ Design and tools
Designing the VR model is the first step of development. Customer experiences need VR designs that provide a 360-degree view of the model. Designers can use the traditional 2D models and convert them into virtual sketches for designing different phases of the VR model. SKETCH is a tool that enables designers to create a user flow inside the VR. Other designing tools include Blender, 3ds Max and Maya, Cinema 4D, etc. However, for educational purposes, designing can be skipped as developers can directly use assets from community-run libraries.

◙ WebVR Libraries
It is a recent integration that has enhanced the capabilities of VR. It works on JavaScript APIs to enable users to experience VR on different browsers. WebVR can be used on most phone screens just by viewing in the landscape mode. Companies can integrate VR experience directly on to their website with the help of WebVR libraries.

◙ Game Engine
A game engine is a necessity to develop a VR interface. VR and game engines focus on building interactive VR experiences that require coding and designing skills. Most engines are available free of cost which can be integrated with SDKs and allow good customizations using APIs. VR engines enable publishing the VR app on all platforms without having to create a separate program for each one.

◙ VR Platforms
It is essential to determine which VR platform the experience will be built for. Unity and Unreal offer cross-platform functionality but you must select an SDK to build the VR application. SD offers engine and platform-specific resources and content that determines the overall VR experience. Each brand has their official SDK and you must begin with that for a perfect native experience.

◙ Testing
VR development requires testing how good the application feels in the VR gear. It is subjective and hence, requires a group of testers to judge its overall experience. Peer testing and session recording are the two major types of testing that developers use to analyze the VR experience of a user. Some technical benchmarks are also set by hardware manufacturers which should be met while designing a VR experience.

Bottom Line

VR may still be in a nascent stage but the future is replete with its use cases. Combined with AI and ML, VR can do some great wonders for our society. If you’re looking to build a VR application, TechJini can help. We are a leading IT solutions provider that can enable you to create virtual experiences and augment your service offerings. Get in touch with us today.

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about the author

Keshav Jeet

Keshav is the most creative and innovative thinker who is never isolated with the bandwidth. He always strives to bring out the potential of technology to deliver a remarkable impact. Started as a programmer he gradually gained expertise in Developing, Designing and Architecting solutions for startups and enterprise. He has varied experience from healthcare, public procurement, ERP and mobility. He helps clients ideate, innovates and uses cutting-edge technologies to solve real-world problems. He brings technological leadership, by evaluating and implementing solutions on next-generation technologies.