Virtual Reality and Tourism – The last impression

by Guest Author on January 15, 2018

in Articles

Technologies and specially Virtual Reality are changing the way we perceive reality. The impact they have in our daily tasks and duties is getting bigger and bigger. Fields such as Architecture, Medicine, Fashion, Sports, Education or Gaming are only a few examples of industries, where cutting edge technology can be applied. Humans usually interact in 5 different senses (taste, touch, smell, sight and hearing) with the environment, Virtual reality is a field that uses all those plus some extra, balance for example, and creates a rich flow of information from the habitat to our minds.
Global search of Virtual reality has sky-rocket 4x from the last year and companies like Google, Samsung, Sony or HTC have released it and are pivoting their strategies to tackle that high-demanding market.
Virtual Reality has stretched the barriers in advertising, marketing, business and storytelling. And like I mentioned before most of our daily interactions have been getting the echo from it.

But let´s briefly have a sneak peak into those highlighted before and observe how Virtual reality did impact.

Architecture

In this environment, Virtual reality has been able to try or test a certain amount of features without the actual cost from it. In terms of Interior Design, designers have been able to show in a more clear way to the clients how the wall would look like, the real space that they are working with and basically place themselves in the scenario where they will work and not surrounded by calculations and superstitions.
This allowed to fine tune and really have on sight the constructions processes, making the math much more accurate and secure for the constructors.
Or with the viability, seeing how your building interacts with the environment.

Medicine

New technologies and specially the 360 immerse videos on the Medicine fields allows the doctors/surgeons and different types of workers to achieve new abilities by experimenting and being immersed in the scenario or even refresh those previously gotten without causing any danger or harm to the patient or animal.
Furthermore, the state of the art technology applied to surgery has allowed to even start implementing the “Robot surgery”. The surgeon needs no longer to be in the same room that the person who is going to be intervened. Throughout this method the person can control the robot which is going to treat the patient with digital tools and wireless controls. This situation could directly tackle the issue with the delays and long list of waiting.

Fashion

With the mode and fashion side, Virtual reality can be a good asset and part of an outstanding live show. It even has the ability for models or usual people to try out the clothes they want to wear or see how they look with a certain look.

Sport

With athletes like golf, athletics, skiing or cycling, Virtual reality is used as a training aid. A tool that can help to measure performance and therefore improve the technique. It enables to have a closer look and fine tune their biomechanics.
On the audience side, it could open a new demand of people willing to do a walkthrough around the stadiums or arenas where the shows are going to be played and help to increase the number of tickets sold.

Education

The teaching aspect can be on elf the most exciting one for the amount of different applications that it has.
Placing yourselves in the situation where the action happens is a great tool for “shocking moment” memory. Which for my perspective is the best way to save in your mind those moments, situations or dates that matter the most and keep them in a safe place in your memory.
Another very important aspect and exciting aspect is understanding better the Bullying. Imagine the possibilities that the teachers and educator could have if they are able to show the kids and teach them to be in other people’s shoes. Learning from a bullied kid or the kid who actually does the bullying to another one, how the society affects both of them and understanding it better.
Making it easier to address the problem and solve it. Those are endless possibilities to teach and worlds to explore.

However there is one more aspect where the Virtual reality can change the traditional concept that we have of it, the key of our article, Tourism.

Virtual Reality and Tourism

Virtual reality is changing the most original definition that we used with Tourism. Back there remains where we used to use “Google streets” to see how learn more about the place where we would stay, places to visits. It helped us to have a better or previous idea of what we wanted to discover.
Nowadays this technology can offer infinite solutions for the brands and hotels. For example, before you are booking the hotel or deciding where to travel. Some brands, for example Marriott Hotel are starting to implement the strategy of “virtual tour around the room and hotel”.They are giving them a previous idea of how the room that they are trying to book is big enough for the family and kids, if it has good views or the features. And on the opposite of what the major may think, those who use this technology are experiencing  significant returns on their investment.  It became the ideal supplement for their marketing and promotional campaigns, it offers customers new sights or enjoy exotic adventures without leaving the comfort of their own space.

Ascape is another example of Virtual reality company which has worked along with Hospitality brands like JetBlue, creating virtual tours of destinations. “The actual tour has some of the highlights of the country, including Havana, Trinidad, Varadero and Santa Clara, as well as some beautiful nature”.  VR. Gorilla

“The big opportunity for Virtual reality will be helping consumers make decisions about where to travel” Analyst at tourism market research firm – Phocuswright
Besides that “It will help to bring more competition to those places where they lack of recognition and name but they have a great natural and cultural attraction” – Douglas Quinby – Vice-president at Phocuswright.

Allows you to walk through any destination in mind and soak up and get the sights and sounds of the surroundings area, making it much easier to decide where would you like to travel / excursions / to stay / hotel. It eliminates from the equation the factor of the guesswork and wandering around through hundreds of online reviews.

Most of the detractors of this technology claim that people will slowly tend to consume more and more technology and the demand for technology applied in this field will increase. Eliminating the “traveling fact” from the Tourism.

Before thinking this is yet another gimmick that will quickly fade into obscurity before it even gets off the ground, a quick look at the results of the ‘Try Before You Fly’ scheme revealed in the first three months alone it generated flights and hotel bookings of over $17,000 and a 40% return on investment. The service was also responsible for a 190% uplift in New York excursions proving how this technology captures the imagination of travellers. – INC.-

Figures and facts can be very solid and show the opposite, however is this actually enough to satisfy the the fulfilment that people have to discover and consume new experiences?

Not even close, online tourism and immerse 360º video will effortless boost tourism sales by offering your wanderlust. It shows you a part that you probably didn’t not know about the destination, giving you a teaser of the entire experience. Lacking in the sense of smell, taste,  or free wind on your skin.
It is possible to defend however, that there is an application for disable or people with difficulties that can be accepted. There are benefits to traveling via virtual reality at the top of mount Everest or getting at the top of a specific castle/region with hard access for physical limitations.

Virtual reality and specially cutting edge technologies are changing the day by day activities that we previously had. It´s up to the consumer to know until where to consume it making a good use of it. If we educate ourselves in that, the sky’s the limit. What we can state is that potential benefit from offering virtual reality experiences may depend on how quickly this devices are adopted by consumers.

Guest article written by: David Ayza Enero, Marketing Manager at Apiumhub, software development company specialized in software architecture and web & app development. Passion for new technologies, sports with the hobby of writing articles and share knowledge about new technologies, methodologies in the industry and its diverse applications. 

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