Do you like hugs?
I love hugs. And maybe one day with the work of a company like AxonVR you'll be able to give a long distance hug that the receiving person can actually feel. Air hugs be gone!
AxonVR "brings your whole body into the experience" as they describe by having you wear an exosuit. Simply put it's a suit with a bunch of stuff* on it that will give you the ability to feel the things you are interacting with.
In the video above, the founders explain the technology well, but here is the relatable VRAR|Q version of how they are making an incredible new experience brining touch into VR.
First, Sight and Sound
Fortunately, many large companies are already on it. Sony, Microsoft, HTC, and Oculus have all made nice headsets that give you the sight and sound. Boom. Covered.
But remember all those times I've said you just want to reach out and touch the objects? Moving past just handsets, with AxonVR's tech you can feel size, shape, and mass.
The coolest thing about their tech is that there's force feedback - the ability to interact with virtual objects as if it were in the real world. So say you "kicked a ball" you would feel the weight of that ball on your foot, as if you had kicked it.
How Does Touch in VR Work?
*What are the "bunch of stuff" on the suit that allows us to feel?
There's a thin fabric layer that covers your body so it can give you feedback on what you're touching. There are two layers:
1- Tactile layer - this layer is responsible for letting you know surface traits. It feeds you the roughness of the rock, the smoothness of an apple, and the slippery feel of a dolphin's skin (I'm sorry, these are the first things I thought of, I have no idea if dolphins have slippery skin, but it certainly looks like it!).
2- Thermal layer thin thermal actuators let you know if what you're touching is hot or cold. (I didn't know what an actuator was so click that link to find out).
More about AxonVR:
Headquarters: Seattle, WA
Silly last thoughts
-Maybe your avatar in their systems can be adjustable, and don't have to be based in reality, so that hug I was referencing earlier doesn't have to reflect the actual love handles you have. (Cool).
-Guess we are only missing taste and smell. When that day comes I MIGHT be able to diet by eating virtual foods. HAH.
-Is it obvious that I just think about food?
Until next time,
VR & AR are for everyone.