Learning and training program development is primed for innovative thinking, and XR applications are part of the revolution.
For creators of learning and training content, embracing the new normal brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic has created a huge need for engaging, interactive and immersive experiences. The solution is XReality.
In this article, ModernEpic explains XR and what it means for developers of learning and training programs.
What is XR?
XR is short for XReality, a buzzword encompassing virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR), cinematic reality (CR) and other technologies that have become compatible in the last few years. It refers to any emerging user experience that leverages these technologies along with a wide spectrum of hardware. The “X” stands for the unknown variable, meaning the reality is defined only by the imagination.
XR is also a unified standard the industry has adopted to create hardware, programs, content, apps and assets that are interoperable, meaning each can interface with the other to create immersive content and user experience.
XR technologies can apply to almost every industry, including education, training, medicine and mental health as well as architecture, sports, automotive, real estate, engineering, retail, space travel, design, media, marketing, music and travel.
How Does XR Work?
Say you like playing Pokémon. You can play the Pokémon video game in a 360 environment on a television screen. You also can take that same game and experience it through a virtual reality headset, or you can play Pokémon Go and project those same characters out onto the real world. The ability to mix and match how the characters and environments are presented is an example of XR functionality.
What Makes XR Functionality Possible?
Content creators who work in the XR space have been forward thinking about making the content accessible on a variety of platforms. For instance, when ModernEpic makes a product, we no longer make it to be experienced on a single delivery system—like making a VR app only for a headset. We make it in such a way that it can be experienced on a headset, a flat display like a laptop, and often on a mobile phone screen too.
At the design phase, we purposely plan to make the product deliverable on a wide array of platforms and devices for different user experiences. We do this by making sure once we have the concept, the elements and the environment in place, they can exist on multiple platforms without having to reinvent or redevelop each piece for one format or the other.
What Is A Frictionless Customer Experience?
A frictionless customer experience (FCX) gives a person the right content in the right channel with the right context. We want you to be able to click a link on whatever device you’re using at any given time and engage with the content fully—to have a great user experience without having to download a specific app or buy a specific piece of hardware to have it.
When virtual reality first came out, VR products made with different standards were competing in the marketplace and they weren’t compatible with one another. Now, VR, AR and MR imagery has gotten to a threshold where it’s necessary and even desirable to have all these formats play in the same sandbox and share user communities. Having XR as the unified standard is an essential part of this, and it’s evolving to reduce friction between a user and the experience for the best result possible.
What Does XR Mean for Learning and Training Development?
If you think of the “X” in XR as the X factor, recognize XR as a nod to extraordinary new possibilities for your learners and trainees. It also lets you ask, what reality do I want for my learner? For my trainee?
Currently, a substantial investment is being made in making user experiences more accessible, more frictionless and easier to integrate into our daily lives. Major hardware developers and telecom providers are working together to manufacture the first unique chip for XR experiences. The goal is to provide more processing power working in tandem with 5G technology - more brain power and more bandwidth.
With hardware developers leading the way, software developers and content creators are sure to follow quickly with innovative, immersive content that meets the XR standard.
So, if you’re making learning or training content, it’s a very exciting time. The industry is bursting with possibility for more immersive, interactive virtual environments that will engage a wider audience of learners over multiple educational opportunities—think beyond one course to include a semester or an entire year of high school.
And new technologies are being combined with old to help create this kind of robust content; including XR and video conferencing, mobile phone and voice recognition software. These tools are available now, and they are incredible.
What’s more, the XR standard is activating an entire ecosystem of prototype technology projects, so in the next two years, expect more innovative functionality and interactivity.
What’s going to happen after that? It’s a question we try to answer all the time at ModernEpic. When our learning and training clients tell us they need something new, we say, great! Here are some new tools that we’ve been prototyping. Let’s put them in the field and see what they can do for you.
XR Experiences for Video Learning
Do you need a virtual classroom, for your video learning class?
At ModernEpic, tech-forward thinking is in the DNA of our company, which is why we can implement XR technology solutions for you fairly quickly. We will leverage the power of great storytelling to produce innovative video and interactive and immersive content that energizes ideas and engages any learner no matter where they’re learning.
When you’re ready, contact us. Complete this form, and we'll be in touch to schedule a one-hour phone session to learn more about your project.