Written by: Gaia Roscigno, Marketing Manager

Since its early inception, there has been a lot of hype surrounding virtual reality. This technology has captured the imagination of consumers and businesses alike with the realm of possibilities and disruptive applications it evokes. I recently used virtual reality goggles for the first time and I felt like I was stepping into a sci-fi future where my perception and relationship with reality was redefined. The implications were both terrifying and awe inspiring.

However, despite all the hype surrounding virtual reality, it has been slow to change businesses and has not proven to be commercially viable as a product. It has fallen flat in hospitals where it was thought to revolutionise the way surgeons train for operations within virtual simulations. It turns out that doctors simply prefer mannequins and 3D printed organs to practice manual techniques that require a hands-on experience. It has also fallen flat as a consumer product where it faces major challenges. The technology is not developing quickly enough and the price tag for sophisticated virtual experiences is still a barrier for most consumers.

On the other hand, there are industries in which virtual reality has shown both promise and potential to disrupt the traditional way of doing things. One of the great examples is training and development. At the very heart of learning is the concept of knowledge transfer and using technology like virtual reality can make that knowledge transfer faster, more effective and more exciting. In the digital era, virtual technology offers a unique opportunity to make learning an immersive experience that brings learner retention and engagement to new heights. I can still remember every moment spent in my virtual session because it was such an immersive and sensory experience. In much the same way, learners are sure to retain more information from their virtual experiences than from traditional one way knowledge transfers.

It seems as though the future still might be virtual. And we can’t wait to see what it brings. Are you ready?