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Unlocking the potential of virtual reality

How virtual reality can be used as a cost-effective tool to prototype, validate and scale

Creating a physical prototype to demonstrate the use of your innovation can often be seen as a daunting task, requiring significant investments of time and money. While some companies can afford the costs of manufacturing, it remains a challenge for many. A lot of start-ups are turning to Virtual Reality (VR) as a relatively cost-effective way to validate and demonstrate their prototypes to market.

Yes, you read that right. More than just entertainment, VR solutions can help you to test, validate and scale your products. Platforms like VIROO® by Virtualware offer an all-in-one VR solution. Innovators can now use virtual reality to create, collaborate, and transform physical spaces into immersive VR scenarios. With the ability to work alongside multiple users simultaneously, VIROO® empowers entrepreneurs to experience their products at full scale.

VR is similar to a virtual meeting but offers the added benefit of physical participation whether you are testing virtual prototypes, or hosting a sales demonstration with prospective partners who are in another country. The collaborators are all in the same virtual space where they can easily make changes to their projects. Unlike the traditional VR systems where only a single user can be present in the simulation at a time, VIROO® enables teams to work together on a project at the same time. 

Contrary to common belief that VR systems require advanced design and coding skills, VIROO® was developed to be user-friendly and accessible. The VIROO® platform also allows users with a laptop to participate in the same session with people using a VR headset.

The Centre for Integrated Transportation and Mobility (CITM) strives to build partnerships with leading industry research and development pioneers like Virtualware to bring their unique tools to help clients grow. Innovation Factory‘s CITM, backed by the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN), is an accelerator program that helps innovators with smart, connected and electrified transportation and infrastructure solutions. 

Let’s say you are creating a product that can help reduce tailpipe emissions of a diesel vehicle. Creating the first prototype of this device could be expensive. Plus, it has to be tested, which means making changes and manufacturing multiple versions of your prototype until you arrive at the final product. 

With VR, you have the ability to work with the virtual prototype of your product, test it in a life-like simulation, collect that data and then continue to adjust the parameters of your solution until you’re able to validate your technology. Not only is this cost-effective, it’s more efficient to create a virtual prototype than countless physical ones.

Create virtual reality demos to illustrate the application of your product 

Hosting a physical product demonstration might be difficult if your customers are in another country. Or, maybe a product demo video won’t be able to effectively promote the scale of your solution, like a technology that optimizes airport operations to make it more efficient and sustainable. 

When it comes time to demonstrate to potential buyers and stakeholders that your product will save them hundreds of millions a year, but in order to do so, for example, you’d have to shut down an entire airport terminal. With the cost and scale of a demo like this, it’s just not realistic for a start-up. With VR, you could simulate a problem scenario for your customer and provide a full demonstration in a seamless experience.

Virtual presentations using VIROO® can help capture stakeholders’ attention, leading to more meaningful conversations, potential partnerships, and investment opportunities. For transportation and mobility start-ups, VR is a great tool that provides you with the ability to experience the full benefit of your technology and leave less to the imagination. 

The VIROO® platform also has the added feature of running Mixed Reality (MR) demonstrations. With this, you can take your product or prototype and place it within a snippet of the physical environment. Essentially, it is melding the two realities together to better understand what the product would look like in the physical environment. 

A short demo of the Virtualware’s VIROO® Platform.

Accessing VIROO through CITM

As a CITM client, you have the opportunity to utilize the Invest WindsorEssex Virtual Reality CAVE and VIROO® platform’s unique services at almost no cost to your business. It includes the cost of user licensing, and engineering and training resources for onboarding and operating on the VIROO® environment. The collective value of this platform is incredible for transportation and mobility innovators.

Using VR as a solution for product creation, prototyping and demonstration is not only cost-effective but more productive and efficient. As technology evolves, it becomes increasingly important to integrate emerging technologies within your organization to keep up with the modern world and improve internal processes. VR as a design and prototyping platform is gaining popularity, and that’s not all that VR can do. There are many ways to use the platform, and you get to decide how you want to leverage the technology for your innovation. 

Interested in learning more about Virtualware’s VIROO® platform? Connect with us to learn more.

Innovation Factory

Innovation Factory is a business accelerator, dedicated to helping Ontario-based businesses launch, scale, and succeed. We provide start-ups, and scaling companies with advisory services, training, mentorship, and strategic connections to help bring disruptive technologies to market, leverage intellectual property, increase revenues, attract investment and create jobs. Serving as the catalyst for tech innovation in the greater Hamilton area since 2011 we are driven to help: Entrepreneurs bring new ideas to life and to market Small/Medium Enterprises (SMEs) get to the next level Hamilton build a dynamic culture and a community of innovation Innovation can happen anywhere. Our goal is to make it work everywhere. We work to elevate key industry sectors including, advanced manufacturing, clean tech, information technology, integrated mobility, life sciences & health care and social innovations.

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