b<>com, a French Institute of Research and Technology, is currently testing for the first time in public its next-generation virtual-reality demo: a dive into the Arctic Ocean. This test has been set up in collaboration with the French ocean theme park, Océanopolis.
Unlike current virtual reality content and systems, the Virtual Arctic Expedition heralds the end of solitary immersion, with the unparalleled integration of a new set of technologies:
– Six degrees of freedom: with the ability to move boundlessly in the virtual environment, wirelessly and with no lag.
– Smart VR: natural interactions between users and with the environment for better engagement among participants, through AI, real-time adaptation of animal behaviours.
– Social VR: because an experience shared between participants and with the outside world on social media is unforgettable.
– Spatial sound: hyper-realistic content marked by direct collaboration with scientists, combined with spatialised audio for immersive rendering.
“The expertise that we have developed in the field of virtual reality, immersive interaction, cognitive sciences, artificial intelligence, and audio/video/graphics formats allow us to offer engaging virtual reality experiences. The potential is enormous for content creators and distributors. Our work with Océanopolis allows us to apply our technologies to “edutainment” content, but we are also looking at several professional sectors, like health and industry,” explained Ludovic Noblet, Hypermedia Director of b<>com.