Do companies need team building?

Do companies need team building?

As VR team building specialists, we explore the necessity of team building for companies. Do companies need team building? There is a surprising amount of evidence that they do.

We know organizations across the globe are developing strategies that are aimed at improving their employee’s performance as it is deeply connected with the overall corporate performance and productivity level (Obiekwe, 2018).

Organizations are focusing on the proactive formation of work teams as a way to improve the performance of individual members to maximize general organizational productivity (Baridam and Nwibere, 2008). This is where team building is one of the most significant methods used by organizations to maximize individual as well as group productivity (Fapohunda, 2013).

What is team building?

Fapohunda (2013) stated that team building involves a variety of activities, presented to organizations aimed at improving team performance. This kind of organizational intervention ensures self-development, positive communication, and the development of leadership, all this leading to the ability to work better as a team to solve problems.

Team building is a process through which a team studies its process of working together and creates a context that encourages the contributions of team members (Chive, Chen, Lu and Lee, 2006). Brandy (2018) states that team building involves helping employees and management alike to learn how to work together as a team. Team building can help with the improvement of interpersonal relationships within the company, increase the motivation of the employees, and it can help with getting to a resolution for organizational conflicts (Kriek 2007).

What are the outputs of team building?

A meta-analysis conducted by Klein and colleagues (2009), based on 60 effect sizes, supports the utility of team building on several outcomes. Some of the most important were goal setting and role clarification. Goal setting and role clarification components create a shared understanding of the task and team.

Osemene (2018) has pointed out that team building can influence the performance of the employees of organizations, in areas such as service delivery, organizational responsiveness, and market value creation for its products and services among others.

Jade (2012) has summarized the benefits of team building as follows:

Improvement of the employee’s morale and leadership skills
Helps target all barriers that hinder creativity
Helps analyze goals and objectives
Enhancement of organizational productivity
Identification of team strengths and the weakness
Additionally, it helps ease conflicts by allowing employees to bond with one another and get to know each other better. It promotes teamwork which is highly important because the teams from an organization, need to efficiently solve the problems that they may come across.


McQuerrey (2019) asserted that teamwork helps individuals from organizations to work well together, improves productivity, and raises the morale of the organization members. In short, it adds a huge contribution to organizational productivity and effectiveness.

In light of the global Pandemic COVID-19, doing classical team-building activities has become increasingly difficult. Given that, having an alternative for bringing people together is very important. VR technologies involve an immersive sound and visual-based experience, replicating the real world or augmenting its features.

Using VR technologies as a solution has become more accessible over the years ( Patera, Draper & Naef, 2008). VR team building is already used to help increase team performance in a sports or military setting. Whether is a soldier-based simulator or gameplay scenario, the users of the VR technologies can train and improve their abilities, through the realistic environment that is provided (Fan & Wen, 2019).

Concerns may arise about technology replacing face-to-face interaction, but is physical presence essential for effective connection?

Over the years when the internet has taken over, we’ve seen that physical presence is not required all the time for you to connect with someone. Just using messages, videos or your recorded voice can help you get to know people all around the globe. The connection you make with other people is not by any means diminished. VR can take that to the next level, and create an immersive experience where you can meet someone, almost as you would meet them in real life.

You would think that trust between each other, would be the hardest to get if it does not imply face-to-face interactions. Corbit and collaborators (2004) showed that when people work on teams face to face, relative to teams that collaborate virtually, there is no significant difference between their results. Trust emerged in both groups and the virtual team scored higher in the direction of effective performance.

People can use these technologies, to create a team-building experience where they can know each other better, have fun and improve their collaboration. Using VR in this way is relevant for organizations, as team-building has a real significance for improving the overall efficacy of the organization, and is an innovative option in these socially distanced times.

Our VR Team Building and Team Assessment Services

We are the VR team building specialists and we combine the best of team building with the best of VR to create some truly unique experiences for your teams.

We also offer VR team assessment and diagnostics, we can help you determine where your team currently is in terms of team performance and importantly what you can do to move them to a high-performance stage.

Contact us now for an informal chat about your team development needs.



Obiekwe, O., Zeb-Obipi, I. & Oparanma, A.O. (2018). Impact of firm-based family culture on employee involvement in Nigerian manufacturing firms. IIARD International Journal of Economics and Business Management, 4(1), 93-101.
Baridam, D. M. & Nwibere, B. M. (2008). Understanding and managing organizational behaviours. Port Harcourt: Sherbrooke Associates
Fapohunda, T. M. (2013). Towards effective team building in the workplace. International Journal of Education and Research, 1(4), 1-12
Brady, D. (2018). The Positive Impact of Team Building. Retrieved from:
Fapohunda, T. M. (2013). Towards effective team building in the workplace. International Journal of Education and Research, 1(4), 1-12.
Kriek, H.S. (2007). A survey of the prevalence and nature of teambuilding interventions in South African organizations. Paper presented at the 12th Conference of the Eastern Academy of Management in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Ikon, M. A., Onwuchekwa, F. & Okolie-Osemene, M. (2018). Team building and employee performance in selected breweries in South East, Nigeria. European Journal of Business and Innovation Research, 6(1), 14-39
Klein, C., DiazGranados, D., Salas, E., Le, H., Burke, C. S., Lyons, R., & Goodwin, G. F. (2009). Does team building work?. Small group research, 40(2), 181-222.
McQuerrey, L. (2019). What are the benefits of teamwork on organization effectiveness? Retrieved from:
Patera, M., Draper, S., & Naef, M. (2008). Exploring Magic Cottage: A Virtual Reality Environment for Stimulating Children’s Imaginative Writing. Interactive Learning Environments, 16(3), 245-263.
Corbitt, G., Gardiner, L. R., & Wright, L. K. (2004, January). A comparison of team developmental stages, trust and performance for virtual versus face-to-face teams. In 37th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, 2004. Proceedings of the (pp. 8-pp). IEEE.

Top 5 best vr team building games, how is team building influencing those games?

Team building games has definitely become a more approachable game genre for the virtual reality communities. The immersiveness of using virtual reality with team building games, makes the overall user experience better when you are talking about playing a CO-OP game or a multiplayer based game “MMO, MMORPG ” . With the upgrades and new features that virtual reality has provided, there are numerous Team building games available for the public, The list below shows the top 5 most immersive games for VR team building.


5. Orbus VR Reborn

Orbus VR Reborn is a MMORPG that lets you and your teammates discover a massive open world, its filled with a variety of quests, group raids and social events within the game, including cooking, fishing and much more, The possibilities of interaction between you and friends are diverse, allowing you to swing swords, gun shooting, harvesting ingredients and even magic casting. The game is embedded with a concept of team building playthrough, as the players are required to form groups of different skills elements in order to complete dungeons and raids, the unit must work as a group in order to clear levels using the concept of getting involvement by each and every member of the group, the classes and tools are unique and they can be use differently, In team building games you are required to work as a team to achieve a certain aspect of the game, and that’s essentially what ORBUS VR Reborn do. A massive open world full of quests that was embedded for VR team building concept, using the immersiveness of a MMORPG game into a massive vr experiences with loads of team building aspects.



PAYDAY2 was originally built as a non VR game, the VR version came shortly after as the game had great success. The game itself consists of a bank heist where you and 3 of your teammates are given a mission to enter a bank or a designated location and get all the money out before the police get their hands on you and your teammates. The game works as a team building foundation for the core of the gameplay, as it’s required for the team entering the bank to work together to achieve the end goal, players divide tasks so the assault goes smoothly, this stimulates the division of tasks , which ultimately results in completing the mission. If everyone is focused on doing the same task the mission is most likely to fail as there are core parts of the game mechanics that need to be covered throughout the mission.


3. The Forest

As survivors of a plane crash you find yourselves in a mysterious forest, battling to stay alive against a society of cannibalism mutants, and why not do it with your friends, the first release of the game was built for PC only, as popularity gotten bigger for this game for their realistic survival traits the game was later constructed for virtual reality, it uses the concept of survival, building, construction, and fighting for your life. The gameplay allows you and your party to play through a VR team building experience which incorporates a survival strategy to prevent any members of the party from dying. The has a backstory that develops as the players investigate the island and its surroundings, the division of work is necessary in order to survive as resources can be quite chaotic to get your hands on. The forest gives a session of team work needed as you don’t want to risk your getting eaten by cannibals.


2. Phasmophobia

You have been hired to find out and stop the ghost from haunting a certain a location, as member of the party your job is to investigate the the surroundings of the house and discover what type of ghost you are dealing with, but be careful, the ghost will try kill you. Phasmophobia has been a huge success since its launching date, you can play up with a party number of 4 players in total giving you more diversity when approaching the discovery of the haunted location. The game requires you to get members of your party involved in order to successfully complete the mission, each member of the group can carry up to 3 items that have different purposes when exploring the inside of the haunted location, This consists of a core of team building aspects as you would have to communicate precisely with your teammates in order to keep everyone alive within the haunted space. The idea is to get people involved to prevent casualties.


1. Keep talking and nobody explodes

Keep talking and nobody explodes consists of “precise” communication to say the least. The game has communication as its core for completing the levels. Team building is about actions that are performed during a game that is later transformed into a trust bond between the members of the team to complete an action, and that’s essentially what this game is composed of, An immersive experience where both players are set to work together for a VR team building exercise. The 2 sets of players are put into a situation where they must disarm a bomb in order to stay alive, One person deals with the manual of how to defuse the bomb without actually seeing how the bomb looks like, on the other side you have the person whos dealing with the bomb with multiple wires and buttons to be pressed but has no clue of how to operate as there are no instructions oh how to do it. They must work together in order to give precise descriptions of what they see and how they can disarm the bomb before the time goes off. This is a perfect example of how 2 people must work together to achieve the same ending goal, which has team building as one of its main cores.

Oculus Quest review – No Strings Attached

With the increased competition from HTC and Microsoft, it was up to pioneers Oculus to spearhead the way into the next step for Virtual Reality, I believe they’ve done more than a serviceable job with the new Oculus Quest, released in late May. Starting at £399 for the 64GB model and £499 for the 128GB, it’s safe to say that it’s more than affordable for the average consumer in respect to the alternatives of having both the PC and headset, but how does it perform?

The headset itself is sleek and beautifully crafted, the matte black finish on the front giving a very smooth feel to the device, with 4 cameras on the front as there are no external sensors with this offering, as well as the tried and tested stretch mechanism, it’s a good looking piece of equipment for sure. A tough fabric protects the users face and eyes from the plastic casing and I found this to be very comfortable, even during extended sessions. Controller wise the Quest is very similar to previous Oculus iterations, the main difference I could spot was the sensor loop having been moved from the underside of the controller to now sitting on top. I feel as though this gives a good balance to the controller and much less risk of getting a finger or knuckle caught inside during intense moments. The now capacitive buttons and triggers also allow for a little extra immersion, however, I have yet to find a practical use for this in any of the applications I used, maybe future titles will capitalise on this and give us some new and interesting ways to interact with the game worlds they create.

With load times for games being less than 10 seconds and the OS booting in less than 5, there is no worry that the mobile chipset powering the device is sufficient, apps run smoothly and even during hectic or power-hungry segments in games such as Robo-Recall or Beat Sabre, I was unable to notice any slowdown or frame rate drops. The only difference I could see was the slightly lower resolution as compared to the beefier, PC-powered counterpart, but this is to be expected and when immersed will not take away from the experiences on offer. There is still, however, a graininess to the screen that plagues all of the Oculus devices, while at a decent resolution, the graphical fidelity of some sections suffers, mostly when visualising objects at a distance. Despite this, I was very impressed with the performance of the console and unless you are a stickler for having the best possible graphics, the Oculus Quest is a very tantalising choice.

The user experience is also a very simple one. From setting play boundaries to loading an app, all it takes is the press of a button. Nothing is hidden behind menus or button combinations. The whole experience is laid very bare for all to see. A truly easy and enjoyable way to pick up and play.

While the claim of being a completely wireless experience holds true for the Quest, a drawback to this is then having to be concerned with the battery, while okay for a quick session, any wishes for extended play will be quickly diminished. On average, I was able to pull around 2 hours on a single charge for the headset, which is considerably less than its main portable competitor, the Nintendo Switch. While this can be boosted with the use of an external battery pack, if you are looking to use the system for a social setting then you may come into some difficulty. The charge time to fully charged is around an hour. For me, this is the main drawback of the system and something that I pray is addressed in future iterations of the system. The AA battery run controllers however will easily run for around 12 hours.

The worth of a console lies very heavily in the choice of titles available, to which the Quest delivers in heaps, boasting a launch lineup of 50+ titles there will be enough to keep even the most dedicated of players occupied for a while to come. Standouts include the tried and tested Robo-Recall, Beat Sabre and Super-Hot, the latter I can only describe my experience of playing on the Quest as INCREDIBLE! The wireless nature if the device allows for a more deep and in-depth view into the virtual world than I have experienced prior. Other offerings, like the ultra-immersive ‘Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series – Episode 1’, left me aching for more sabre-swinging, force-wielding action, truly a must-play for fans of Star Wars and story-driven games alike. The Quest is littered with so many gems that it started to feel like the console is worth its weight in precious stones. I found the system to have more than enough memory for my needs, using the 64GB model, with every application owned being installed (around 18), the system was not full and had more than enough space for many more games. This is fantastic as consumers will have a variety of applications available at any one time.

As well as this you are more than welcome to take advantage of the video streaming capabilities, with streaming available to Facebook direct from the headset. If you wish to see gameplay on a TV, however, you will require some extra equipment, either a Chromecast to a TV or using a mobile device and the Oculus app. Both are easy to set up and with minimal visual lag, it’s a great way to share screens.

Overall the console offers a big step in the right direction, while still being essentially a first-generation VR console, the freedom on offer greatly surpasses any limitations to graphical fidelity or play time due to battery size. The wide array of applications will give even the pickiest of gamers something to enjoy. I can wholeheartedly recommend the Oculus Quest to anyone looking for an easy and relatively cheap VR experience, no strings attached.


Oculus Quest Has Arrived … And It’s A Game Changer

For too long now we have been waiting for a new innovation to launch VR into the mainstream, and let’s be honest, many of us were starting to give up hope.

Most people that have trialled the current crop of hardware will have had positive, enjoyable experiences, agreeing that the technology shows much potential, but are yet to be fully convinced. Why is that? What is putting them off from actually forking out on a headset?

Although cost will be a factor for a lot of consumers, others say that for a platform that is supposed to fully immerse the user in a virtual world, and give them a sense of freedom, it can often feel, well, restrictive. Because even when you can’t see anything from the real world when wearing the headset, you can’t shake the feeling that you’re going to accidentally trip over that wire you know is sticking out of your head.

Perhaps they’re lacking a PC with the right system requirements, or they’re not too keen on the idea of having additional external sensors placed around the room to prevent tracking problems. These are some of the main issues that VR hardware manufacturers have been struggling to overcome … until now.


All Together Now

Enter the brand new Quest headset from Oculus ­- arguably VR’s best chance yet of appealing to the masses. It’s an all-in-one system, so it doesn’t need to be played through a PC or other machine, and it’s all wireless.

It also comes with four wide-angle cameras built in as part of the new Insight tracking feature – no need for those extra sensors any more – while its six degrees of freedom means it can track your movements in – you guessed it – six directions: up, down, left, right, forwards and backwards. Because it automatically senses the space you’re in and adapts to it, the headset can be used in rooms of varying sizes with minimal setup.

Even so, some users will still feel a bit uneasy moving around too much in case they get too close to a real-world surface or object, which is why the Quest comes equipped with the same Guardian system as the Rift. This enables the wearer to draw out a boundary so they can avoid accidentally punching a wall or stubbing a toe on the sofa.

If you are planning on using it across a number of spaces then the Quest is capable of remembering the Guardian layouts for multiple rooms and recognising when you’ve moved from one to the other, eliminating the need to retrace the grid every time you boot up the system again.


A Touch of Class

Also similar to what came with the Rift are the new Touch controllers, although they’ve been moderated slightly with the Quest. Those familiar with the Rift design will notice that the tracking strips have moved from below the hands to above them. This is so it can be more easily picked up by the head-mounted cameras, and the effect on the accuracy of the tracking is extremely impressive.

This might be a standalone system, but that hasn’t resulted in efficiency being heavily sacrificed. The Quest really makes the most of its built-in Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, a chip that’s actually been around for a while and can be found in smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy S8.

Despite its chip being a few years old now, the new headset is more than capable of running popular VR titles like Beat Saber and Robo Recall without a hitch, and you can be confident that the tech won’t let you down when lining up that winning serve on Sports Scramble – a new sports package that could just become the new Wii Sports if enough people get the chance to try it.

However, these games aren’t the most demanding in terms of performance. It remains to be seen how the system fares when it’s really put through its paces, and you can expect some of the real top-spec titles, which would probably be too much for the Quest to handle, to head to the PC-backed Rift instead. Still, its capabilities for a mobile device represent a real leap forward.

And the price for all this? The Quest comes with an RRP of £399, which is the same as the new Rift S headset from Oculus – an improved and upgraded version of the original Rift – released on the same day (May 21st). The Rift S may be a preferable option for those with a high-end PC, but for those who don’t and have been waiting for the right piece of kit to come along and give them the ideal entry into the world of VR, the Quest may just have everything they need.

Educating Gen Z Using Virtual Reality

Engaging with students in the age bracket known as Generation Z (Gen Z) – those currently aged between around 15 and 22 – is not a new challenge for the higher education sector.

Educators have always had to update their methods to stay in tune with the modern world they’re preparing their students for, with technology playing a crucial role in this process. These days it’s arguably become more important than ever, with tech so central to the lives of young people who fall into this demographic. Gen Z are true digital natives, and won’t remember a time before the internet and digital technology, mainly because they weren’t even born back in those primitive times.

As well as continually seeking out that next piece of tech that will take their entertainment to the next level, Gen Z are now looking for more advanced digital experiences to augment their learning. And because they’ve now reached the age where they’re either at college or university or will be heading there in the next few years, these institutions are under pressure to ramp up their tech efforts or risk having some very uninspired students on their hands. When the next stage is for them to enter the world of work, it’s crucial that educators start acting to give them the right learning tools to suit their tech-hungry mind-sets.


Meeting expectations

Research is showing that VR is becoming an increasingly desirable learning aid. According to a new study from the Center for Generational Kinetics, commissioned by Cognizant Consulting, “the majority of Gen Z (60%) is now open to incorporating virtual reality into their experiences with movies, shows and games, and this will extend into the learning environment as students expect an immersive educational approach that provides practical experience in their chosen field.”

Although these digital experiences will differ depending on the course they’ve chosen, many young people are indicating that they’d like their learning to be more immersive, with VR now recognised as a useful educational tool. Simulation is proven to be a highly effective way of learning, and virtual reality enables this to be done in a way that Gen Z can immediately engage with.


Learning by doing

With VR, you’re learning through experience, and there are multiple theories out there suggesting this is the best way to retain what you’ve learnt. One of the best known examples is Edgar Dale’s Cone of Experience, which claims that we retain just 10% of what we read (shown at the tip of the cone diagram) but a whopping 90% of what we do (shown at the base). Even though it happens virtually, in VR you are effectively tricking your brain into thinking you’re really ‘doing’ the activity you’re learning, so therefore, if Dale is correct, it’s far more likely to stick than if you were to simply read about doing the same task in a boring old textbook.

Virtual reality therefore presents a whole new way to learn skills that were previously difficult to teach. Before, the ‘doing’ had to be done for real, maybe in the form of a practical experiment or a costly school trip, but with this new technology all it takes is a headset and some convincing content so it’s as close to reality as possible.

VR enables pretty much limitless learning possibilities due to the activities taking place in a virtual, created world. Learners could be immediately transported to a place in history that they need to know about, or perhaps a faraway geographical location that they’re studying. The older generations got by OK with traditional non-tech methods, but Gen Z don’t tend to respond well to passive-only learning.


Playing it safe

Another benefit of VR is that it allows the user to experience the activity that is being simulated with as much accuracy and realism as possible, but in a safe way. The wearer can afford to make mistakes that could get them into trouble in the real world, but in the virtual space they won’t be harmed, for example experimenting with hazardous chemicals in a ‘VR lab’.

Of course, we’re only at the very dawn of VR being utilised for learning, and it will take a bit of time to really take hold. Yet what is really starting to excite experts is the potential for it to be combined with other emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, even robotics.

But let’s allow VR to properly find its place in the classroom before looking too far ahead, or before we know it we’ll have Generation Alpha to cater for too, and that’ll be a whole other challenge entirely.

Facebook’s New Voice Assistant To Be Supported By Oculus

Following the success of Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri, Facebook has announced that they are (finally) creating a voice assistant to rival the above-mentioned services. The company syas they have been working on the new initiative since as early as 2018, but news of the voice assistant only broke out after a report from CNBC a few weeks ago. A Facebook spokesperson later confirmed the news with a statement in a Reuters report, claiming:

“We are working to develop voice and AI assistant technologies that may work across our family of AR/VR products including Portal, Oculus and future products.”


Initial Support for Portal and Oculus

The voice assistant will be implemented across Facebook’s entire AR/VR product lineup, most notably Portal and Oculus. They’ve also made an effort to indicate that the voice assistant may be used in upcoming new products in the near future, although we still have no idea what those products may be. As far as supported applications outside of Facebook and its products, it’s anyone’s guess. While it’s very possible that we may see Facebook provide their voice technology to others, it’s still too soon for speculation.


Voice Assistant Capabilities

With very little information released, ideas about how Facebook will implement the AI assistant are all but confirmed. Since it will be a part of various key Facebook products and they are comparing it squarely with the top voice assistants of today, we can hazard a guess as to how it’ll work and what it’ll do.

The company’s Portal video chat smart speaker could greatly benefit from an AI assistant, although the market is already rather saturated. Amazon and Google are several steps ahead of Facebook when it comes to AI assistants, holding 67% and 30% of the market share in the U.S. respectively. Have Google and Apple got too significant a head start in the AI assistant race for Facebook to force their way in? Only time will tell.


Not Facebook’s First Rodeo

The new voice assistant won’t be Facebook’s first attempt at an AI assistant for the Oculus. Since Facebook acquired Oculus back in 2013, they’ve been experimenting with different technologies such as their 2015 AI assistant for Facebook’s Messenger called M (remember that?). The idea was to help users with intuitive and smart suggestions, but it never took off and Facebook eventually had to scrap the project.

In March 2017 we saw an ‘Oculus Voice’ service appear on Oculus devices. Although basic, the service did enable users to perform simple voice searches from Oculus Home, as well as navigate through games and applications. Alexa and similar voice assistants were on a superior level at the time, and Oculus’ initial voice assistant seemed limited in its abilities by comparison. The new and upcoming voice assistant promises vast improvements that make it a viable competitor.


Meet The Team Working On The Project

The development team behind the assistant is operating out of Redmond, Washington, under direction from Ira Synder, the general manager at Facebook Reality Labs. Synder, who previously spent over a decade at Microsoft, is also director of a project called Facebook Assistant, which is probably closely related to Oculus’ Assistant.

Since we have no official statement confirming the name of their new AI assistant, Facebook Assistant might be an internal codename for the project, or it may end up being the actual name of the end product.


What The Future Holds

Considering the rate of progress in the voice powered assistant space, our imagination may be the limiting factor when guessing what Facebook will be able to offer with theirs. As Regina Dugan, former VP at Facebook pointed out, it’s possible that Facebook will one day develop a brain-computer interface.

What’s your take on Facebook’s new voice assistant? Do you use an AI assistant at all? If so, would you consider switching to Facebook’s alternative once it hits the market? Let us know, we’d love to hear your opinion.

6 Best Mixed Reality Apps For Microsoft HoloLens

There have recently been substantial improvements to the power of virtual reality technology, which has successfully managed to push itself to the forefront of the minds of gamers, tech enthusiasts and businesses. Mixed reality, on the other hand, remains a vague term in the mind of the average Joe. In spite of the achievements of mixed and augmented reality projects such as Google Glass and Pokemon Go, many consumers are yet to tune into the benefits of these new platforms.

The Microsoft HoloLens is one mixed reality platform that goes somewhat underappreciated in the discussion. Powered by an app store that includes over 400 apps, many of which are free, this piece of kit must certainly be one of the most fully featured of all mixed reality hardware options. In this article, we’d like to introduce you to some of our favourite applications for the Microsoft Hololens, which demonstrate the potential of mixed reality in a range of scenarios.


Robo Raid


Since the launch of the Microsoft Hololens, Robo Raid has been one of the best apps out for showing people what mixed reality can do.

A space shooting game on the surface, Robo Raid introduced players to the capabilities of mixed reality technology by demonstrating room scanning technology and superimposing game elements onto the user’s physical space.

Imagine virtual space robots bursting through your own living room walls and you’ll understand how this title combines the real world with the virtual to great effect.




If there was ever any doubt in the power of mixed reality for use in education, HoloAnatomy is here to change all that. Allowing users to conjure up life size (or any size you like) anatomical models, Holo Anatomy also provides a virtual narrator to guide you through learning objectives as you explore the human body and it’s systems.

When once diagram may have made the point, medical students can get up-close and personal with the systems of the human body, no cadaver required.


Skype for HoloLens


The development of the Skype app for Hololens indicates that Microsoft intends the platform to continue to be developed as a serious work tool and not become limited to games and experiences.

As well as the simple benefit of being able to place your Skype video call window anywhere within your field of view, Skype for HoloLens also allows the person on the other side of the call to see what you’re seeing and add to your mixed reality drawings whether they are using Skype for HoloLens or a regular computer.



If you’re a fan of hit US crime show CSI, then you’ll love Fragments. This mixed reality game-slash-experience superimposes virtual characters into your physical space to create a story-driven detective game that takes place in your own home. Suspects are interviewed on your sofa and clues are hidden elsewhere in the living room.

Strong visuals combined with emotive storytelling create an immersive MR experience that some may have imagined was only possible with VR technology.



This new addition to our list shows the ambition of app developers to make the absolute most of the Hololens hardware. HoleLenz, created by developers in Japan, allows users to cast virtual “holes”, which are similar to windows or portals, into their physical environment.

Users can choose to float these portals in space, or add them to a wall, but in either case, breathtaking scenery from 8000 meters above Japan’s Mt. Fuji is visible through the portal.

You can then create more holes of various sizes and even step through the portal, transporting you to the other dimension…


White Cane

White Cane has to be included in any rundown of the best apps for Microsoft Hololens because of it’s bold ambition to change lives through the power to mixed reality technology.

White Cane is an experimental app, created to share an idea of how blind people could be helped by using cameras and sensors to detect surfaces and objects around a user before employing sound to relay this information to users in a way they can make use of.

Different surfaces create different sounds and users are able to tell by sound if the way ahead is clear. Though White Cane is just a proof of concept at this point in time, it demonstrates the genuine challenges which people face that could one day be helped using mixed reality.



Hopefully this article has shown you that mixed reality is continuing to improve and become more useful with every passing day. With Microsoft announcing that Hololens 2 is already in development, there’s never been a better time to try MR by taking advantage of our Microsoft Hololens hire service. Of course, we’ll also have the Microsoft Hololens 2 available for hire when it’s eventually released to the public.

Virtual Reality – A New Dimension in Learning

When you think of virtual reality the first thing to come to mind probably isn’t education, it’s more entertainment. Well, one of the fastest growing industries in the world is trying to reach a wider audience one of which is Education, and higher Education. There are many different ways this could benefit students in the classroom and we look forward to seeing how this is implemented in the coming years. With the Virtual reality industry, it’s just a matter of time until it becomes a household product like a radio or television Is in the modern world. But the producers are also trying to open up other routes which lead to completely different markets including education, healthcare, the military, space and much more! This brings more sales, investment and general interest around the products.


Education is evolving

In the past decade, there has been a major change in the way education is delivered in general. With advancements in technology and more people gaining access to the internet, more people have started taking online courses. This removes the need to have as many teachers and means that people can gain qualifications while sat on the couch! Governments and organizations that provide education, especially in countries where you have to provide education for free would much prefer to use a VR device to deliver their lessons as they don’t have to pay a teacher, for electric, toilets, health and safety etc. It only looks as if more people will choose to take their lessons online, although this doesn’t mean that schools and universities can’t also benefit from the use of VR products!

Classrooms are the typical place for education to take place, and we believe this will stay the same even in the virtual realm. In other words, even when you are taking a virtual lesson half of them will be done in a classroom environment. Universities could massively benefit from this opportunity as many students have to travel a long distance to get there. If there was an emergency lesson or somebody had to go home early they could simply join in using their headset. We’ve already seen hospitals live stream select operations in order for doctors around the world and doctors in training to watch and improve their skills! Why could the case be the same with professors and lessons on different subjects?


Helping less privileged people gain access to higher education

We all know how hard it can be for less privileged people to gain access to any type of education which limits their capabilities in life, this shouldn’t be the case! With Virtual reality we have the opportunity to provide people around the world with good quality education, one VR device could change somebodies life and give them a chance to go somewhere and improve their situation.

Anybody who is in higher education would love to have their very own VR device to help them with revision. There’s one major problem with this at the moment, there’s simply not enough content out there to justify buying one! Hopefully, in the future, you will be able to re-watch lessons in order to pick up on anything you need to re-visit or you missed out on in the first place. There is also the opportunity for developers to make games that are fun and educational at the same time! Although this could be rather difficult when doing so for higher education students, it is still possible.

The one major problem with the headsets was the price as a good quality device would’ve cost anywhere between 300-700 pounds a couple of years ago. But now with the Google cardboard, Samsung Gear and many other models now being available for less than 100 pounds! University students are always short on cash so spending a large amount on a VR device may not have seemed like a priory, but with prices falling by the day it’s much more likely a purchase will be made. Another great example of how a VR headset could benefit students is the ability to take trips anywhere around the world. Imagine if you were doing history and could transport into the middle of Auschwitz, the Roman Coliseum or anywhere you desire within seconds.


Endless Possibilities

The possibilities are endless when it comes to education through Virtual reality devices and we believe this will be one of the main types of education going into the future! There are already people using their headsets for a bit of extra revision and it’s only a matter of time until you can get a Virtual course and qualification.

The Computer Science Behind VR

Virtual reality has kind of come and gone over the last few decades, and it has only recently been practical. Now, video games and various computer programs are starting to use VR in cool and exciting ways. However, not a lot of people understand how VR really works. They may “get” the concept and enjoy the experience, but there is a lot of science wizardry going on behind the scenes that we want to take a closer look at.


VR Tricks Your Brain

Because you aren’t in 3-dimentional world when you put on a VR headset, the technology has to trick your brain into thinking that you are. There are a couple ways that it does that, the first of which is stereoscopic display. This is the combination of two separate images. These images come from different angles, and when put together they create an illusion that there is depth. Every scene is rendered with multiple angles to make it look like you are seeing something that is in the physical world instead of displayed on screen. A different angle is shown through each of the two screens on the VR glasses, and when your eyes try to combine the images, it puts them together as a set of 3-dimensional shapes.

VR also employs a technique known as parallax view. This is the method of moving far objects at a slower pace than near objects. By moving different objects at different speeds, the ones that are supposed to be farther away really do seem like they exist in a 3-dimensional world.


Keeping up with Your Eyes

Your eyes are great at figuring out when they are being tricked and at picking out inconsistencies. If the images the VR device is producing run too slowly (too few frames per second, to be more precise), then you will lose the illusion that you are in another world. Your eyes will notice the slow framerate and the virtual experience won’t really work. So, anything that is pumped through he VR device needs to be able to maintain a smooth framerate.

That means that there are going to be some graphical limitations for many games, and their engines must be powerful enough to handle numerous complex computations very quickly to keep up with what the VR device creates.

The latency also must be very low for VR to work. If there is a discrepancy between how quickly the screen shows something happen when you press a button or perform an action, then your experience will be hindered. There will always be a delay between action and reaction, but if it is only a few microseconds, then your eyes shouldn’t notice. The latency for most VR experiences aims to hit a sweet spot of about 3-4 microseconds.


Handling Problems

If all this different technology that goes into creating VR don’t work like it should, there will be some serious repercussions for the player. More than just not being fully immersed in the world, or not being able to to see true 3-D images, they may start to experiment motion sickness or other health problems.

There are already warnings accompanying VR experiences that advise users to not operate the VR tech for more than an hour or so at a time. When you throw in problems with the latency, processing speed or images, then a lot of what could go wrong will go wrong. People will react to VR in different ways, and even if not everyone experiences motions sickness, if a large enough percentage does, then the technology will need to be tweaked.

That’s why it has taken so long to get VR to a workable stage. People have been trying to make VR happen for decades, but only now is the technology available to give people viable, affordable VR experiences that they can enjoy in their own homes. It’s all due to the magic at work behind the scenes. As you can see, there are factors at work that not everyone is going to understand or appreciate, but these are the things that make VR a consistently enjoyable experience.