The Pros and Cons of Virtual Reality
Virtual reality is being harnessed by many industries to achieve new levels of user engagement and is, therefore, growing in popularity year after year. More importantly, as the price of virtual reality devices is gradually coming down, it is becoming accessible to a mass audience. Just like with any other mainstream technology, VR comes with its pluses and minuses. In this article, we will describe the pros and cons of VR so you use it for your business.
Benefits of Virtual Reality
One of the most exciting things about VR is that it is changing how we work, relax and even learn. We really observing a paradigm shift and it is having a positive effect in many areas. Let’s take a look.
- Training – One of the benefits of virtual reality is that it can simulate a dangerous environment for training purposes. This means that firefighters can apply the skills they learned in a controlled environment before having to extinguish a real fire or a pilot can have an extended practice flying a virtual aircraft before flying the real thing and many other uses. Such an immersive experience will shorten the gap between veteran workers and rookies thus allowing them to grow into their roles faster.
- Conferencing – Instead of having to get into your car every morning and drive to work only to have to sit through a bunch of meeting, VR can bring all the participants together in a virtual environment. Currently, VR developers are working on producing live coverage of an event in VR. Even though the participants might be spread out miles apart, thanks to virtual reality, it will feel as everybody is in the same room.
- Convenience – We all go shopping and hesitate when it comes time to make a purchase. We are always worried about buyer’s remorse. For example, when you go furniture shopping and you see the dining room table of your dreams, but you are wondering how it will look inside your dining room. You can use virtual reality to juxtapose the interior of your dining room and the table to make an informed decision.
Disadvantages of Virtual Reality
So far, we have looked at the pros of virtual reality but there are some drawbacks as well. Let’s take a look.
- Addiction – If someone spends an extended period of time in a virtual environment, they may become addicted to it. This is especially dangerous with social networking since you can create your own avatars and meet other users online. Also, you can do many activities in the virtual world that are illegal in the real world and there is always a danger that someone might act out something from the digital world in the real one and there is no reset button.
- Health effects – Extended use of virtual reality can lead to loss of spatial awareness, dizziness, disorientation, and nausea. If we look at nausea, such as seasickness, in the traditional sense, the reason for it is that we feel all the movements, but we do not see it. This is why going to the deck of the ship and looking at the horizon will make you feel better. With virtual reality, it is the opposite. You see all the movements, like the ones in a video game, but you do not feel them. Nevertheless, these cases nausea if you spend too much time in virtual reality.
- Loss of human connections – This is where somebody relies more on virtual reality for social interactions than in real life. As a consequence, this could create some improper associations that are not a part of the real-life social setting and can ultimately lead to depression and disassociation depending on the severity.
When used correctly, virtual reality can be a powerful tool to change our lives for the better and revolutionize the way we go about doing things in our ordinary lives. It is already being used by many businesses to provide customers with a more personalized and intuitive experience and connect people from around the world. With all these benefits at our disposal today and many more to come in the future as the technology progressives, we must remember not to get carried away. We just have to be careful and not go overboard with it because all of the health effects and losing touch with reality are very much real and you must be constantly aware of this as you start using virtual reality even more than before. However, if all such extreme circumstances are avoided, society has a lot to gain from virtual reality and positive applications far outweigh the negative ones.