Blockchain For Virtual Reality: The Convergence Of DLT And VR Is Coming
Imagine a technology that makes it is easier to experience things that are either expensive (in terms of money or effort) to experience, or actually do not exist in real life, using high performance computers. You might never have had the experience of travelling to space with the space X, communicating with your family remotely as if they are physically present with you, or run an Olympic 100 meters. But, with the emergence of virtual reality technology, you can do all these, even much more.
Dated as far back as 1929, with the efforts of Edwin Link who developed the mechanical airplane simulator known as the Pilot Maker, pioneering the field of flight simulation. Virtual reality has long been used for training airline pilots and surgeons and for helping scientists to figure out complex problems such as the structure of protein molecules.
Unlike the real-life experience, virtual reality means automating the simulation and simulating every moment of either the physical world or unreal worlds, using high-performance computers and sensory equipment, like headsets and gloves. In other words, it is the visualization of one’s environment in three dimensions of width, height, and depth and that may additionally provide an interactive experience visually in full real-time motion with sound and tactile.
Virtual reality makes you think you are actually living inside a completely believable virtual world, you are partly or fully immersed. Virtual reality is a two-way interactive experience. As you understand and respond to what you see, what you see manipulates your reactions to also responds to you.
Other than scientific experiments, flight simulations, and surgeries, virtual reality has long soared on the limits of the gaming world too. Gaming is one of the most immediately apparent applications for virtual reality. For the devoted gamers, nothing could be more exciting than the prospect of being literally elated inside the game, and exploring amazing environments beyond imagination.
Ever since it gained popularity years ago, virtual reality (VR) technology has been under-utilized mostly, due to the exuberant costs of Head Mounted Displays (HMD) such as the Oculus of Facebook, and HTC Vive. The VR technology industry continues to grow at a rapid pace, becoming a $1 billion sector in the U.S. The Consumer Technology Association, CTA, projects that 4.9 million units of VR devices will be sold and $1.2 billion generated in revenue this year, making up 25 percent increase from the year 2017.
According to Forbes, the recent Game Developers Conference held in San Francisco evidenced advocacies of tech giants such as Google, Facebook, and Sony for the virtual reality technology. The events showcased individual contributions to the commercial aspect of virtual technology in bringing it to the mainstream. Based on expert-made estimations from Business Insider, the VR market will surge from $2 billion to $27 billion between 2016 and 2022.
The blockchain technology being a shared, immutable ledger for recording the history of transactions, it fosters a new generation of applications that establish trust, accountability and transparency from contracts to deeds to payments, and interestingly to the reality technologies.
The convergence of the complicated blend of algorithmic cryptography to achieve autonomous consensus between individuals, and the immersive way to experience games and entertain oneself could seem incredible. However, innovations never cease to erupt each passing day, making it a fair bet that both blockchain and reality technologies will play a significant part in shaping the valiant future we are heading towards.
The integration of blockchain technology is envisaged to be a major drive to virtual reality technology. According to experts, a VR-blockchain blend could catalyze the digital advertising revolution by solving many common problems such as data transparency, ad fraud, and mismanagement of funds spent on advertisements often experienced.
A conceivable resolution is for these platforms to keep track of users’ interactions with VR ads and directly make payments to content owners. The whole process could be done on blockchain's secure, accurate and transparent updating of data, and ensuring data integrity. This is where blockchain companies and/or reality technology companies could exploit the potentials of these two technologies.
Currently, the market has several examples of unique, useful solutions that combine both VR and blockchain. Companies at the lead of these innovations include Victory Square Technologies, Decentraland, 360 Blockchain, Hashchain Technology, Marathon Patent Group, and Ceek, to mention a few.
Blockchain For Virtual Reality Contributions
Below, we examine the individual contributions of some of these companies to the effort of converging these two amazing technologies:
Victory Square Technologies
Victory Square Technologies emphasizes on innovation, incubation of excellent ideas and social responsibility as the core of its growing success. The company is known to be a venture builder that creates, funds and empowers entrepreneurs working in the fields of blockchain technology, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, personalized health, gaming, and film making.
One of the foremost efforts of Victory Square Technologies is the proposed social sports betting platform to be developed by the subsidiary, FansUnite Media Inc. Victory Square Technologies utilizes the Blockchain technology and the inherent security it provides to build the most dynamic and responsive social sports betting platform. Based on Ethereum, FAN Tokens were also introduced as an in-game currency that could either be purchased with Ethereum or acquired from different bounty programs by the company.
Among other landmarks made by the company are the acquisitions and partnerships with various blockchain start-ups including Limitless Blockchain Technology, and Keynote among others.
Decentraland is a virtual reality platform powered by the Ethereum blockchain. The platform allows users to create, experience, and monetize content and applications. Decentraland makes the virtual world accessible through the use of Head Mounted Displays (like the VR head headsets) and the solution is entirely hosted on the blockchain. This unique experience empowers gamers around the world to own and verify properties in the virtual world.
To interact with the system, players must enroll themselves on the public ledger. Also, the system uses cryptocurrency for purchasing and prove of ownership of parcels of land. A player’s virtual land can be developed (literally) with houses, businesses or other services just like in the popular game Second Life, and monetized accordingly.
Decentraland also exposes its API to developers and tagged it “The tools and support you need to pioneer Genesis City” in the space willing to build upon the existing solution.
360 Blockchain is another company in the VR-Blockchain space making tremendous contributions to the VR-Blockchain space so far. 360 blockchain aims to transform how businesses are conducted, delivering security, cost savings and efficiencies at an unparalleled scale. 360 Blockchain is building an all-round blockchain ecosystem that enhances the timely development of public and private blockchain technologies, including cryptocurrency, smart contracts, decentralized data ecosystem management and cryptographic security.
360 Blockchain’s emphasis is to invest in technologies that are using blockchain in varied and innovative ways. Consequently, the company is at various stages of acquisition agreements with blockchain companies. This is evidenced by its announcement made early November 2017, on its intent to acquire 60 percent of the outstanding shares of SV CryptoLab, a social hacker community space by day and a cloud-based cryptocurrency mining organization by night.
Another major acquisition by this company is the announcement made in November 2016, revealing the intent to buy 70 percent of Pressland, open-source media directory and website focused on media transparency, looking to relaunch as a blockchain-powered platform to combat false news.
Blockchain For Virtual Reality Conclusion
In a nutshell, blockchain technology has the unique ability to help individuals connect & communicate, share, and encourage new contributions as well. As VR evolves and is embraced by the mainstream, it will help blockchain continue offering new immersive experiences and opportunities for development. If VR goes mainstream, it is believed that virtual experiences will move from restricted environments to the centralized worlds. Therefore, it can be boldly said that the blockchain with trustless and decentralization capabilities, will be an awesome solution.