June 15, 2022

Curious Lab Time – the one with the VR bar

This week, we enjoyed our inaugural Curious Lab Time.  We are going to protect time every month to satisfy our inquisitive minds and get inspired! Then we’ll bring this back to our clients in the shape of ideas or ways of super-powering our work to make it even more impactful.

This month we spent some time with Connie and Laura from our partners 55E5 playing with VR headsets and looking at the work they’re doing with clients in different sectors.

So much fun! We had a nose around the virtual collaboration environment created for one of their clients. Rather than create a board room, the space included water features, a bar, a fire pit and chill out areas that we could transport ourselves into.  It took a bit of getting used to but once Lottie had worked out how to pick herself of the floor of the bar (these VR experiences are super realistic 😉) we mastered teleporting, accessing content and meeting other avatars.

We were inspired by how many applications these platforms or media have in healthcare: employee engagement, training, medical conferences, sales activities, story-telling, patient adherence, policy implementation– the list goes on.

Watch this video with your headphones on and use your phone to look around. https://youtu.be/X8ANtv150PA  55E5 created this film with the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists to tell the story of Elizabeth Printer, who suffered a debilitating stroke at the age of 46. She lost her career and family as a result of insufficient after-care. The film was shared with MPs at an event in parliament, calling for the NHS to deliver on patients’ rights to community rehabilitation.

The use of technology also goes beyond the message that you’re delivering.  Embracing new technologies signals to your audiences that you are open to change, curious to experiment and have an eye on the future.

Whilst the tech of course costs (although these are rapidly coming down) tech can drive equality and accessibility to experiences and learning.  One of my favourite examples of immersive technology is Field Trip to Mars on Vimeo, designed to inspire interest in STEM.  The reactions of the kids still put a smile on my face every time I watch it.

I think it is fair to say that I am not necessarily an early adopter of new tech! I can understand why people can feel a bit intimidated when it comes to things that we can’t fully get our heads round.  It is really difficult to explain to someone the benefit of using VR or augmented reality to reach audiences.  The metaverse can be even more difficult to fully understand. Connie made the point that she likes to think of it as brand engagement coming full circle.  If you think about it in retail terms, we went from going to shops to buying through words and pictures on the internet. With the metaverse, we’re going back to being able to be somewhere and engage with the experience.

But the best way to overcome any scepticism or feeling intimidated and understand the possibilities is to get stuck in and give it a go!  If you’d like to chat to us experimenting with the tech like we did, get in touch – staycurious@curioushealth.io.

Curious Lab Time will cover a wide range of experiences for the team.  No doubt we will spend more time with the latest tech to see how it can support story-telling and engagement.  We’ll also be looking out for exhibitions, immersive theatre, films and anything else that gets us away from the day to day and inspires us.  If you’ve got a suggestion for something that you think we’d like, we’d love to hear from you.

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