Virtual Reality

Four New Ways To Interact With Friends In VR

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Four New Ways To Interact With Friends In VR

The other day, I was roaming around the world. I went to the Eiffel tower, before suddenly finding Joseph near the beautiful Northern Lights. As we both stare deep into the lights, we really feel as if we’re standing next to each other and looking at the same thing. When infact,he’s in England and I’m in New Zealand, on the other side of the world. This is what Virtual Reality does to bring people and friends together, inside Virtual Reality.

The definition of Social Media is: Websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking. These applications enable users to participate in a social network around the globe, all inside of a VR headset!

1 – Street View VR

oculus-street-view

StreetViewVR, Available On www.streetviewvr.net (SDK 0.7 Supported)

Pros


Firstly, StreetViewVR. We all know someone that lives away from us, that we may only be able to text, or message online, so we can’t really talk to them, let alone see them that often. With StreetViewVR, although you are not able to talk to each other, using an alternative app such as Skype you are able to go around the world together, looking at different places that you may not be able to afford to go to. With StreetViewVR connected to the Google Maps’ data, users are able to go anywhere, anytime. There are also many indoor places such as cafe’s which you are able to enter. StreetView also has informational “bubbles” which you are able to click to give you information about the location you are in, making it a social and informational adventure. 
  
Cons

Experiencing StreetViewVR is amazing, and still has a long way from being complete. Luckily, the developers are still working on this amazing project. Being able to talk to others while in the same “group” as you while you explore together would be it perfect. As well as two bugs I encountered. Some places I went to would come up black, and I’d have to go somewhere, then come back to see it. Another issue was that occasionally we randomly got taken someone else.

If you are interested in checking this amazing app out (Recommended), Click Here. I personally recommend all Rift users check this out, even if it’s just for five minutes it is so worth it.


2. AltspaceVR

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AltspaceVR, Two People Talking while one person get’s ready to play Flappy Dragon while streaming Hearthstone.

Pros


AltspaceVR, another great application! With daily events and 3D microphone audio, as well as areas for meetings, it’s an amazing place to meet up with people. There’s also a Dungeon’s & Dragons room for those wanting to play with friends! As well as many apps such as Flappy Dragon, Chess & Poker. It has a 2D web browser built in, with the ability to share your browser to a giant holographic screen, it’s great for meetings, or just wanting to watch streams with people! They also have an SDK for users to code live inside of Altspace, and allows developers to create their own worlds.

Cons


Although it’s a great application, there are a few issues I’ve personally encountered. Me as well as a few other people that have tested this, run into random frame drops. which on a 970 should not happen for how the textures look. So it seems there may be some kind of leak. Another issue is not being able to right-click in web browser (otherwise it takes you out of web browser), and not being able to copy/paste. I attempted to create the information about this application inside AltspaceVR itself, however couldn’t due to these issues. The final issue I had encountered was with the “apps” inside AltspaceVR. (eg. Chess, Flappy Dragon, etc) Some of the apps end up being super loud over everything else, meaning you can’t hear anyone, and it hurts your ears. Another issue was that I wasn’t able to figure out how to play Chess with a friend, which I asked the developers over 48 hours ago and have still not received a response, which really you can say is a good thing that they’re more focused on fixing bugs and adding content than ticket support, but they may need a mix of both.

Overall, I’ll probably only use it for meetings with staff members, and a few of their occasional events once and awhile. Click Here to download!


3. ConVRge

NRZCHIx

Pros

ConVRge is in some ways like AltspaceVR, but in other ways aren’t. ConVRge is mainly used to talk to people and watch live streams together. ConVRge was recently live streaming all of the Oculus Connect event so people could stream the event inside Virtual Reality, this really brings a lot of people together and is like watching a rugby game with friends, it gets quite exciting.

Cons

The only con I found was that with the disco room (Yes, there’s a disco room!) once you step in, you hear music. Wherever you go onwards you’ll always hear the music, unless you logout and log back in. Except for that I quite enjoyed ConVRge.


If you’d like to download ConVRge, click here

4. VR Cinema

CINEVEO-for-Oculus-Rift-review

 

Pros


Cineveo, with six different themes to choose from, you can watch 2D, 3D, and 4D movies in Virtual Reality with other people and friends, it’s a great way to stay close to those you’re far away from. It also allows you to use subtitles, as well as custom Standard, SBS (side by side), and Over/Under. It also has the features of unique hands free controls, as well as a feature I personally enjoy. If you look to the left of your seat, you’ll see a little screen. This screen shows you your webcam in the real world, which can be useful to know if someone decides to come in, or you just want to look at how you look inside Virtual Reality. Selfie’s inside VR, after looking at the magazine of Palmer Luckey, I personally think they could give us a few new laughs, and memes. Another great positive is that, although it costs $10 USD. It gives you updates as SDK’s go through, and is going to be updated as the CV1 comes through, and from what I’ve recently seen, they occasionally have alpha previews of movies that people go watch, (such as Searching For Hell.) Cineveo are also (for a limited time only) giving Android users the app for free until it hits 10,000 downloads! (For cardboard VR), As well as having SDK 0.7 support and Windows 10 support. You also have the choice to either download standalone, or via steam.

Cons

 

The main con I found, there’s two separate Unity .exe’s for each of the six environment, and there’s a free Multiplayer theater demo around, that and for Windows 10 it seems only one movie theater environment works as the others are outdated (0.6, instead of SDK 0.7), which from the time some people view this, may have already been fixed. It has a long way to go as far as frequent crashing goes, but we have to remember that this is the true beginning of Virtual Reality, and we are all still learning what “Normal” VR will be like.

Personally, I enjoy all of these apps in one way or another, even with having cons of each of them. Virtual Reality is becoming a great and powerful thing, within the next few decades it could even become mainstream. There are many other ways to interact with friends, some that I’ve never even heard of. But these are the ones that I tried and really enjoyed. If you’re a developer reading this, even if you make games and nothing like the four things I’ve talked about above. Multiplayer (2 player games), couch coops, something where you can game with a friend in VR, even having one person in VR and the other outside. We need some of those, and now’s the best time while there’s no competition!



If you happen to personally find any great apps to interact with friends inside VR we’d love to hear your suggestions! Comment below, tweet us at @VRRelated or Facebook us at: Facebook.com/TheVRBible

 

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Jomas McCormick

Jomas is an Intern at VRRelated, As well as this, in the VR scene he also teaches kids, aged predominantly between 9-15, how to use Unreal Engine 4 to create Virtual Reality games. Jomas also hosts Virtual Reality events to show his community the future that is just around the corner.

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