Is Our Future Virtual? A Window into Oculus Rift

If you have never heard of Oculus Rift it should definitely be on your radar.  Oculus Rift is a new virtual reality headset that is creating a huge amount of buzz in architecture, technology and gaming circles. The headset allows you to fully immerse yourself in digital environments and experience space as if you were actually there.

Best of CES 2014

At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the Oculus Rift won the “Best of CES” award. As an immersive tool for video games the benefits are obvious and immediate.  You are directly in the action and can interact with games in a way you never have before.

While most of the development and excitement has been centered around video games, the Oculus Rift has the potential to radically change a number of industries including commercial real estate and architecture.

Oculus for Real Estate and Architecture

Currently organizations like NASA, the military, the auto industry and museums are working hard to imagine how virtual environments can impact the work that they are doing.  What will the future look like for architects and real estate professionals?  How will this new technology impact their businesses and creative process?  One thing  is for sure- immersive digital environments promise to save massive amounts of time and money and allow for unfettered creativity.

Play Your Project

At Studio216 we are incorporating  virtual reality technologies into our process.  We are using Unity to develop playable projects that allow users to get inside and occupy the spaces they are designing.  This is happening both in mobile applications (iPad, Android, Windows) and in headsets like Oculus Rift.

One mobile application we recently completed was for an mixed-use office development in Seattle and allows the viewer to use the iPad’s accelerometer as a window into the future.  To check it out you can download the free app for the iPad.  By placing the iPad in front of your face and looking around you can simulate what it would be like to actually be in the space.

We are developing experiences in Oculus Rift’s immersive environment.  If you have an Oculus you can click here and link to one of our virtual worlds.   In addition, our research and development team has created a 360 animation for a large, landscape project in Sihong, China.  Coming soon are 360 videos and playable residential units.  Stay tuned as current projects become available for the public.

One thing is clear, as mobile devices and virtual hardware becomes more pervasive, the day is approaching when all clients will be able to play their projects.

If you don’t own an Oculus and would like us to come into your office for a live demo, don’t hesitate to reach out.