Asia gets first interactive Virtual and Augmented Reality centre

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Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are closer to being incorporated into industry, education and edutainment in Asia thanks to an initiative by EON Reality Inc. and Deakin University, Australia, under which the two entities have entered into a partnership to set up the first Interactive Digital Centre (IDC) Hub in the Asian region. EON Reality Inc. specialises in AR and VR-based knowledge transfer for industry, education, and edutainment. The company has invested in excess of US$10 million in the facility which will be the most comprehensive of its kind in the region when it opens during the first half of 2016.

The collaboration between institutions of higher education responsible for preparing students for the job market and tech companies that are already operating in the future world of work makes strategic sense for all parties involved.

Future workers need to be prepared for a world of work where virtual reality and augmented reality play an integral part of operations. These technologies will leave no industry untouched. Already the real estate, healthcare, entertainment, automotive, education, tourism, space and advertising industries are incorporating virtual reality to improve their services.

Unlike virtual reality, which immerses the user in a virtual world, augmented reality superimposes graphic information onto the real world in the user’s field of vision. Through head-mounted displays like the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive, workers can access data via augmented reality displays without interrupting tasks. It’s unlikely that areas like workflow management, quality assurance, safety and training will ever go back to the days before augmented reality assistance.

An Entrepreneur School that will offer comprehensive education programs with three different courses on offer related to Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality will form part of the IDC Hub. EON Reality’s Work Integrated Learning programs will expose students to industry projects provided by EON from their global customers. Initiatives like this one will pave the way for qualified AR and VR developers to meet the needs of the future market.

The IDC Hub will include the EON Idome, the first of its kind in the Asia-Pacific. The EON Idome is a patented multi-user immersive and high-resolution interactive 3D dome that will be used for outreach programmes. The IDC Hub will be located in Melbourne’s CBD.

Deakin University has leading researchers working in Virtual Reality and is home to the Centre for Design and Engineering Training (CADET), a facility that includes a state-of-the-art Virtual Reality cave.

EON Reality is a multinational VR and AR software developer headquartered in Irvine California. The company sells software to corporations, universities, governments and the entertainment industry, aimed at knowledge transfer.