I have written before about the power of collaboration in VR, but it is back on my mind, because this week at the Nvidia GTC conference in Munich, I have the pleasure of presenting a session alongside Palfinger Cranes.  They don’t just preach about collaborative VR, they practice it too, often involving the customer directly.

Connecting systems, be they Powerwalls, Head Mounted Displays (HMDs) or simple 3D projectors, is so easy these days, that hardware is no longer a barrier. Connections require only a standard internet cable and can operate within a company’s secure LAN, so IT managers can rest easy.

I am left scratching my head, though: Why aren’t more companies using this approach, given all the benefits it brings?

In recent conversations, I have heard again and again that the benefits of collaborative VR sessions are not only the “quick access to the experts” or just the simply saving time and money on travel costs, but also the benefit of the whole team working together and the consequent improvement in their teamwork.

It seems meeting up regularly with colleagues is a benefit to organisations, it stimulates ideas, makes team members appreciate different viewpoints etc., and…

… reach better decisions! Who would have thought it, working with a team is a good thing?!

Working in an immersive VR design review, seems also to be a good thing too; feedback from a recent exercise shows that the team works closer, because despite this team’s geographical and language barrier, its members can meet and discuss ideas easily, so more ideas flow.

It would be unfair to ask that company to share details of its streamlined projects with the world – it is their competitive advantage, after all.  Instead, to give you a flavour, I had the guys at Virtalis re-enact the bigger picture with me – you can see the results here.  Enjoy seeing what happens when immersive VR moves beyond tech and becomes embedded working practice.