The 5 Best VR Experiences You Can Immerse Yourself in Today

July 8, 2016

8:00 pm

VR is no longer a distant dream – in case you haven’t heard, it’s already here and causing some massive disruptions within various industries. A lot of gaming development companies are already developing their flagship VR products and adapting them for the growing market. But all things considered, epic VR experience does not end with video games.

In fact, digital publishers, innovative startups, and established businesses are getting quick with joining the bandwagon and luring new users with one of a kind experience. On this list, you’ll find the top 5 most curious ones up-to-date. While of them can be staged with a DIY Google Cardboard, others will require you to be among the lucky VR headset owners, or rent one from the company offering the experience.

YouTube X360 Video

Even though the VR headsets are just rolling into the mass market, the biggest video content providers have already started offering some spectacular VR content. YouTube has a rather impressive library of 360-degree VR videos. Some well-known companies are already on board, including: Discovery Channel, The New York Times, and The Economist.

Imaginary Fancy Dinner Party

Project Nourished has just started offering gastronomic virtually tours. Here’s how it works: you put on a VR headset you are taken to a thrilling location, selecting from several other devices:

  • An “aromatic diffuser” with a tube sticking out and diffusing food aromas at you.
  • “Bone conduction transducer”- a new kind of headphones, which will mimic the sounds and vibrations of chewing.
  • A 3rd printed cup for drinking and utensil shaped tweezers for eating.

While this kind of experience may sound pretty weird, it actually offers some wonderful opportunities to virtually “try” the products. In fact, technology like this has the potential to digitally address problems like food allergies, weight gain or even consumption.

Travel To a Luxury Destination

Hotel chain Marriott recently teamed up with Samsung’s Milk VR technology offer unique V-Room Experience– an in-room travel experience to three luxurious destinations you may or may not afford to visit.

The service is only available at two locations so far – London Park Lane and New York Marquis for a premium price. A reported for Engadget recently shared his experience with VR postcards:

“After a few seconds of loading, I find myself on top of a mountain, gazing out into the distance where a misty haze envelops the horizon line. To my right, the craggy peak falls away into a sloping decline; without thinking, I widen my stance to make sure I don’t lose my footing. I’m left with my thoughts until a hiker walks into view, picking their way through the rocks and launching into a monologue about the joys of travelling”.

Google Maps Street View

For those who crave to experience VR travel, but are on a tight budget there are free Google Maps, now spiced up with some VR experience too.

To get started, simply open Street view app on your mobile device, browse the gallery or search for a specific location to launch its street view. Next, get your Google cardboard on and tap Google Cardboard icon and insert your phone into your Cardboard as instructed in the app. Voila, you can now enjoy some dazzling whereabouts and some locations will even allow you to walk on water.

Within

Digital storytelling is taken to the brand new level with VR. Within proposes a curated collection of high-quality VR stories crafted by some of the videographers and digital publishers. You can walk the streets of NYC in an amazing story created by the New York Times Magazine; attend a voodoo healer spiritual ceremony captured in Haiti by Vice or immerse into the history of Cuban dance filmed by Lucy Walker.

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Dianna is a former ESL teacher and World Teach volunteer, currently living in France. She's slightly addicted to apps and viral media trends and helps different companies with product localization and content strategies. You can tweet her at @dilabrien

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