As we’ve talked about many times before, video conferencing tools like Zoom are spiking right now due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but what about if you want to collaborate on physical projects from the comfort of your home? Well, that’s where the VR collaboration platform Spatial comes in.
Spatial, launching two years ago, was developed to be used with the advanced VR tech of Microsoft’s HoloLens and MagicLeap’s VR headset but now, in an effort to help homeworkers out, it has gone free and will be available on multiple platforms. Spatial can now be accessed on web browsers, iPhones, Android devices, and Oculus Quest, giving users of Zoom a chance to take a look at what a virtual collaboration space looks like rather than a call where everyone seems to talk over each other.
To get this piece of technology working all you need to do is take a snap of your face and upload it into the 3D world and you’ll have a mini-me in a virtual office space. You can also access a Zoom call-like function as well as sharing screens. Of course, those who are joining via a mobile device or web browser, won’t be able to take part in any VR functionality but you can oversee what’s happening and talk about it with your colleagues. On the other hand, if you are using a VR headset you can unlock Spatial’s full potential, drawing, pointing, and potentially even reading the body language of your bosses, making it as close to a real in-person meeting as possible.
While this is an excellent free virtual reality collaboration tool, it’s certainly not for everyone and more aimed at those in the creative sector who potentially need to see mock-ups of designs or objects in a 3D space to get a feel for what they are truly looking like. Those who aren’t in these sectors may feel like it’s a bit gimmicky and should maybe stick to the classic video conferencing method of communicating.
Spatial making their technology free for all is certainly a step forward into the future of virtual collaboration and while it doesn’t look like it belongs in the future quite yet, it may set the precedent for meetings to come.
If you have a VR headset and want to play around with your work colleagues it’s certainly worth checking it out. It’s free, and hey, you might even have a bit of a laugh at the same time.