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Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Video Conferencing

Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Video Conferencing

Virtual reality and augmented reality (VR and AR) are making remote collaboration easier for businesses by allowing them to host conferences or meetings without attendees having to leave their homes.

The time during COVID-19 pandemic proved that teams could work remotely and still be productive. This fact hints at how teams will work and collaborate in the future. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Video Conferencing tools are the next step in the remote working transition.

There are many apps designed to make meetings in VR more accessible. As these products release more features, it is clear that more companies will start using the technology.

With the integration of AR into VR, showcasing products and brainstorming ideas are sometimes easier than carrying products around with you. In this article, we will dive deep into the subject of video conferencing technology.



Augmented Reality Video Conferencing

Augmented reality video conferencing is a trend that emerged in 2020 when people were forced to social distance. However, it should not be distinct from virtual reality video conferencing, which we will discuss in this article.

Typically, with AR video conferences, the attendees don’t need glasses to partake in the meeting. Instead, the software creates an interactive virtual space experience for attendees to join. For example, someone can show an image of a graph, and the software will create a 3D model.

Anyone in the conference can interact with that model, make changes, and so on using their computer. Being able to do this allows people to give a better idea of what they’re trying to highlight. It also creates a better connection between everyone attending.

To get a better idea of augmented reality video conferencing and its capabilities, I recommended checking out this video:

IseeAR | Interactive Augmented Reality for Video Conference | AR&Co

The Role Of Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Conferencing In The Future Workplace

AR and VR video conferencing is a technology that was starting to pick up, but it was a slow burn. People were slow to adopt these new techniques; however, the technology grew exponentially because most people had to start working from home.

Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Conferencing In The Future Workplace
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

When you combine VR technology with AR technology, the correct term is mixed reality and changing how we do business. Show or a few examples of how mixed reality is changing the landscape of the workplace:

  • Interactive meetings with colleagues worldwide.
  • New ways to showcase ideas and products.
  • Mixed reality meetings allow more people to work from home.
  • Using VR to train new employees is especially useful for dangerous jobs.

Many companies outsource a lot of their work. They also have offices across the United States and the world. Now people don’t have to fly across the state or overseas to attend a four-hour meeting; this can be done in a mixed reality setting.

Augmented Reality And Virtual Reality Conferencing Pros And Cons

Pros And Cons

ProsCons
Work from homeUpfront costs
Create interactive experiencesHarder to manage employees
Many apps make it accessible.Not as personal

While VR and AR are still in their infancy, the pros outweigh the cons. 

AR Meetings, What To Expect

AR meetings can happen in a few different ways. For example, you could be present at the meeting, or you can do it via video using something like Zoom. In addition, if you are attending an AR meeting, you might be asked to wear a pair of AR glasses.  

When attending an AR meeting, you should expect to be more interactive. For example, instead of someone showing you a product and talking about it, they might ask you to interact with it.

AR Meetings - Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Video Conferencing
Image Credit: venturebeat

The best example is if someone wants to show a product but can’t carry it around, they can showcase it using augmented reality. If the meeting is taking place online then, for 3D models will pop up next to whoever is talking.  

Augmented Reality Video Call

Augmented reality video calls can be used in many professional or personal settings. You can use the IKEA app on your phone to see what furniture would look good in your home. Or, you can use augmented reality to make a video call for business or fun.

You can add real-time effects using augmented reality in a video call. You can do so much, from changing the way you look to changing the scenery around you. For example, you can make it look like it’s raining even if it’s not.

Augmented reality video calls create a connection via an interactive experience. It can either make you laugh or be used for more serious things. 

Image Credit: archive.curbed

AR effects in video Calls ( iPhone examples)

iPhone does AR right, and they are constantly adding new ways to use augmented reality within apps such as FaceTime, but it’s not only FaceTime. Even apps like Facebook are starting to add more and more content to their augmented reality lineup.

Here are a few examples of AR effects in video calls, specifically on iPhone:

  • Add text labels
  • Change your appearance
  • Become a cartoon or Memoji
  • Add items to the call

Changing your appearance can be funny, but it can also give you a preview of what you would look like with different-colored hair or a beard. You can also add funny filters to change the shape of your face, almost like Snapchat.

Zoom Launches AR Facial Effects For Users

Zoom was the most popular app used for virtual meetings. The app is a straightforward, handy tool that can bring people together worldwide. However, Zoom took quite a while to add its own AR filters.

You can change your background, appearance, and so much more using Zoom air filters, but many people still need to learn how to use these filters. So, here are my five easy steps to using Zoom filters.

How To Use Zoom AR Filters: 5 Easy Steps

  1. Start a video call
  2. On the bottom left corner, click the small up arrow on the “Stop Video” option
  3. Select “Backgrounds and filters”
  4. Select the background or filter you want
  5. To get rid of the filter, repeat the above process but select “None” 

You can also change the zoom air filter before starting a video call. To do this, go to settings, backgrounds, and filters and apply whichever AR effect you wish; you can still eliminate the filter using the above method.

What Is A Virtual Reality Meeting

Virtual reality differs significantly from augmented reality, although the two share very similar concepts. For example, virtual reality meeting takes place online. The workspace or meeting area will be virtual; it won’t exist.

In 2021, Mark Zuckerberg announced the launch of the Metaverse, a virtual reality world. In this world, people can create workrooms and so on. You can also create avatars to represent who you are in the Metaverse.

Virtual Reality Meeting
Image Credit: employmenthero

However, the Metaverse is one of many virtual reality meeting areas. Plenty of companies are starting to make their virtual workgroups.

In a virtual reality meeting, you can be anywhere and still feel like you are sitting beside your colleagues. The meeting room could have a virtual computer or augmented reality elements to make the meeting more interactive.

Zoom Virtual Reality Meetings

Zoom does have options for VR. In addition, they have integrated other apps that work with Zoom to produce meeting rooms. 

Zoom VR meetings are better described as mixed reality meetings. Using augmented and virtual reality concepts, a Zoom Virtual Reality meeting can make you feel like you are.

The Oculus headsets are the best for these meetings, as you can track your hand and body movements. This means you can point to things; people will see them in VR as if you are there.

There is also spatial audio, meaning you can hear in which direction someone is talking, creating a better immersion level.

Zoom Collaboration With Meta

Meta has been making a massive push to get people involved and their Metaverse. This virtual reality space offers games, workrooms, and much more. Zoom and Meta have recently made a collaboration to work together.

You can use virtual reality when using Zoom and Workrooms, which means you can meet with people wherever they are. It will feel like you are sitting beside them, looking at their avatars.

How Do You Use Virtual Reality In Zoom Meetings?

How it all works together is quite genius. Only some people have access to VR headsets, but they still need to attend meetings in the VR space. So, zoom has partnered with a few VR meeting rooms to solve this issue.

VR meeting spaces can be hosted from Zoom. This way, people without VR headsets can dial into those meetings. It works the same as any other Zoom call.

Once you dial into the meeting, you will be given some options: 

  1. One option is to join in virtual reality; this way, your face camera will pop up on an augmented reality monitor in the VR space.
  2. You can also display your Zoom whiteboard, so if you have to illustrate something to the people in the meeting, they will see it in VR.

Virtual Reality Video Streaming Workflow

VR can take on many forms. Most of the time, we use VR to visit digital landscapes designed on a computer. However, VR video streaming, also known as 360 videos, is a technique where a 360 camera or multiple cameras are used to capture an entire real-world scene.

The typical VR video streaming workflow looks like this:

  • Capturing the scene using a 360 camera. In the past, multiple cameras were used instead
  • The video should be sent to a PC, where it needs to be stitched
  • Stitch all the videos using software like Adobe Premier Pro or Vahana VR
  • You might need to use another program to encode and decode the video
  • You can use software such as OBS to present the live stream to whichever platform you prefer

There is a more straightforward method for consumer-grade 360 cameras, such as the GoPro Max. Everything can be done on the GoPro app on your phone. There is no need for expensive equipment, third-party software, and beefy PC’s to do this.

What Do You Need To Stream VR

For any content streamed in VR, you need a camera to capture all around you. You can do this by attaching multiple cameras to one hub and stitching the videos together. You can also use a panoramic or 360 camera. Here are a few other things you will need to stream VR:

  • The camera or cameras
  • If you are live streaming, you would need a capture card
  • A good PC
  • The right software

Overall, the introduction of innovative options to the virtual reality market had meant that VR live streaming has become less expensive than it used to be, and you don’t even need a VR headset to be the one who presents VR content. All you need is a camera and the software. 

Virtual Reality Cameras And 360 Virtual Reality Video Cameras

The right camera is crucial to producing excellent quality content so your audiences or colleagues can feel immersed in the VR stream. Luckily, getting the right equipment no longer costs an arm and a leg.

Instead, you can find affordable cameras that produce high-quality video for your streams, including:

The Insta360 Pro is what you’re looking for when you want to produce professional quality content. The other three cameras are made for consumers.  

Virtual Reality Meeting Apps

One of the first apps you’ll want is Zoom. After its collaboration with Meta, you can now use Horizon Workrooms and Zoom to collaborate with colleagues worldwide. Once you have Zoom installed, there are three apps that you’re going to want to get.

Horizon Work Rooms

Horizon Workrooms is a mixed-reality VR setting. Because of how the Oculus Quest works, you can have real-world items in the VR set, such as your computer. The VR meeting software is free to use.

Horizon Work Rooms
Image Credit: roadtovr

There are multiple types of meeting room aesthetics to meet whatever the tone of your meeting should be. You can use your design avatar when setting up your Horizon Workrooms app. vr meeting solutions.

You can also collaborate with people on Zoom. They could be using their avatar or on an AR monitor anywhere in the room. They can also use their whiteboard to develop ideas and collaborate with anyone in the virtual reality meeting. 

Spatial

Spatial is likely the most practical VR meeting room to use. It also allows you to bring real-world items into the meeting, such as files, products, etc.

Spatial
Image Credit: scientificamerican

It is one of the best VR vr meeting solutions to showcase any product. With its use of AR, showing off a product to people worldwide has never been easier.

MeetinVR

MeetinVR is one of the best apps to use for brainstorming. While this VR meeting software doesn’t have most of the same features as some other apps, it is easy to use and does just enough to make it one of the top apps in the market.

MeetinVR
Image Credit: producthunt

Round Up

With remote working and distributed teams becoming the norm, it is inevitably highly probable that Mixed reality is how businesses will collaborate in the future. There is no getting around it. As a result, massive corporations spend a lot of time and money researching and developing the best ways to incorporate the combination of Augmented reality and virtual reality meeting platforms technology into our everyday lives.

With augmented and virtual reality, you can meet with anyone wherever they are and create interactive experiences. These experiences all participants to make more significant connections than calls, texts, or emails.

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