VR/AR Association Aims to Grow VR Licensing

By Mark Caplan, VRARA Content Licensing Committee Co-Chair  (Original article here

Mark Caplan of BD Labs, who also co-chairs a committee for the association, will moderate a panel discussion on digital entertainment at Licensing Expo. 

As VR and AR technologies continue to offer licensors another avenue to build their brands and offer consumers a new way to experience the world, the VRAR Association has revealed that is well positioned to help the licensing community accelerate its growth within the sector.

The VRAR Association is an international organization that is designed to foster collaboration between companies and people in the VR and AR ecosystem. For the licensing community, the association will aim to assist content owners and other members of the sector in accelerating their growth, knowledge and connections in the VR, AR and mixed reality space.

The organization has also developed a number of committees to help in its endeavors, including one on content that is co-chaired by Mark Caplan of BD Labs.

Additionally, Caplan will moderate the panel discussion, “The Changing Landscape of Digital Entertainment,” at Licensing Expo on May 24 at 2:15 p.m. He will be joined by panelists Travis Rutherford of Evolution, John Sutyak of DDM, Javon Franklin of 71 Studios, Clint Waasted of Zynga and Arthur Madrid of PixOwl.

Additional details regarding the panel discussion can be found here.

Check out the May issue of License Global to learn more about recent trends in the VR sector.

VR/AR Will Be All About Storytelling: Join Us at Narrative Summit 3 (SF)

VRARA Members, contact us for discount code to attend.

One common thread in several technologies -- especially VR -- is transforming how stories are told. This is the evolution of narratives, and the subject of the Digital Narrative Alliance (DNA) Narrative Summit 3: Stories that Change.

Taking place June 20 in San Francisco it will feature a full day of sessions and networking on the evolution of storytelling. The VR/AR Association is an event partner and will join the discussion about how this evolution of storytelling is impacted by immersive technologies.

VRARA Members, contact us for a discount code to attend 

More from the event organizers:

If you are a journalist, marketer, executive, policymaker, filmmaker, academic, or a citizen with a cause, you know the path to awareness and relevance has been transformed radically by digital media. Perhaps you’d like to understand how to invest in this white water world. The Digital Narrative Alliance team is working hard to create an event that will help you understand the new challenge of storytelling in accelerated times.

At the second Narrative Summit, we explored the distinction between narrative, which encompasses the values, assumptions, and aspirations the audience brings to their experience, and story, the account of events we typically think of when referring to stories and narratives. Understanding that distinction provides storytellers, leaders, marketers, and filmmakers to contrast the expected and unexpected to develop entertaining and surprising stories. 

Narrative Summit 3: Stories That Change takes the next step in our exploration and lays the foundation for dynamic cross-media storytelling that can established shared expectations, develop feedback loops and audience participation in shaping a narrative, as well as open the door to public modeling of future products, services, policy, and decision-making. Here’s the key: the Gutenberg-era concept of a definitive version of a document or story has passed its expiry date and opened the way to non-linear stories with many different outcomes. We have experienced this as a decline in confidence in authority and institutions traditionally associated with authority, and it has stressed the media environment to its breaking point. With a new understanding of narrative, story, and feedback or remixing, creative leaders can redefine the relationship with the audience to co-design the future. It’s the essence of next-generation engagement within organizations, with customers, stakeholders, and citizens.

On the one hand, that new post-authoritative world has torn down the one-off presentation of a story, the organizational missions, and public debate, as we now widely acknowledge the presence of “spin” or inconsistent information has changed the nature of media. But on the other, stories can now be seen as steps on a path the author and audience take together, building a relationship through the interactions now possible between the creator and user of each tale. Seeing in terms of narrative, we can then understand how different interpretations of facts are modulated by life experience, previous communications – in the form of conversation, brand promises, political commitments, and so forth – and the context of the rapidly accelerating economy.

It’s time to start using stories to change our future. At Narrative Summit 3: Stories That Change, we’ll discuss how game design is similar to modern theater, the evolution of storytelling as a tool for social trust-building, cross-cultural storytelling, as well as the value of improvisational skills in management and society. Join acclaimed director Louie Psihoyos, whose films The Cove and Racing Extinction are environmental landmarks, as well as An Inconvenient Truth producer and Bourne Ultimatum screenwriter Scott Z. Burns, who will talk with former Obama economic development advisor and producer Barry Johnson about telling the stories of all peoples, especially minorities and other marginalized groups, in two upcoming films. Architect and author Ann Pendleton-Jullian will discuss Pragmatic Imagination, her new collaboration with Silicon Valley pioneer John Seely Brown. AKQA founder and Stanford DCI Fellow Tom Bedecarre will close the day with a speaker roundtable that is sure to rock your mind.

Seating is limited – register today to participate in this important day of speakers, discussion, and networking.

Learn more about the VR/AR Association, San Francisco Chapter here

VRARA Digital Health Committee Industry Survey Results

The VRARA Digital Health Committee conducted an initial industry survey for companies making VR/AR products in healthcare among healthcare providers. The goal was to understand current state of VR/AR healthcare market and identify challenges to adopting VR/AR healthcare solutions. The results are shown below. For a detailed slide presentation of the survey and Committee's work, including action steps, contact us. 

Those in the VR/AR community are looking forward to the day that VR/AR becomes mainstream. Currently the technology is starting to be used in the Enterprise settings, but the healthcare industry has many of its own unique challenges. Achieving mainstream adoption in healthcare will require overcoming several hurdles. Each needs to be understood in detail if we hope to increase the rate of progress. Thus, The VRARA Digital Health Committee is dedicated to understanding the challenges around bringing VRAR to healthcare so that the solutions can be seen.
— Brandon Birckhead, Immergence Tech

Thank you to all who answered the survey and to the Committee participants, and special thanks to Brandon Birckhead of ImmergenceTech, George of Mativision, Paula of Amalgamated Vision, Dom of Corporation Pop, Ali of Cinglevue, Henry of Corvecto and Amy of endeavorVR for making this Publication possible. Graphics made by Ada Chiu. 

Recap of the VRARA NYC Chapter & NYTV People Event "Future of VR/AR" at The Mill, NYC

By Julian Locke, NYTV People

The VR/AR Association partnered with The Mill and NYTV People for a panel and networking event called the Future of VR/AR. Panel members included Boo Wong, Group Director of Emerging Technology at The Mill, Cindy Mallory, Business Analyst for DreamSail Games, Michael Owen from Media Combo, Amy Peck, Founder Endeavor VR and Moderator Chris Pfaff, CEO, Chris Pfaff Tech/ Media LLC.

It wouldn’t be a VR event without VR! Boo Wong and The Mill let people experience some of their latest cool projects.

It wouldn’t be a VR event without VR! Boo Wong and The Mill let people experience some of their latest cool projects.

VR Changed My Life – the usual panel introductions were turned upside down when Cindy Mallory told the incredible story of how a chance encounter with VR on a date had such a profound impact on her she ditched her career as a Biochemist at Rutgers University and joined DreamSail Games. Now instead of studying the isolation and purification of the Celb2-MBP from Ecoli PMAL Vector she focuses on the analytics management for virtual reality development game creation with emergent technology!

The Realities of VR - Michael

Owen discussed the challenges of producing cinematic VR in uncontrollable environments where none of the production team can be physically present “You leave your camera in a busy market place and it’s gone!”

Those VR Headsets will soon be $10 on Ebay! Amy Peck spoke about how the technology is moving in the direction of an immersive experience that will be shared with friends in a virtual world. Rather than the solitary experience we mainly have today.

Building Awareness in Early Adopters & Taking Next Steps

Like the early days in mobile, success and growth are linked inextricably to building awareness. Currently the market is entering its second year of market knowledge and adoption; but it is really the first year of rolling up the sleeves, for knocking on doors. Both content creators and technology enablers must appeal to the early adopters for both business and word of mouth cache. Being the first still has its benefits. Companies both large and small that buy and use VR/AR content are seen as leaders and will be seen as the one to compete. For the industry as a whole, this free advertising is crucial in exponential organic growth.

So what does this look like in the field? For me, this means I explain the value and benefits the industry provides to companies interested in the VRARA. For content creators and VR/AR tech providers this means leveraging your network and explaining how you can work with the small business owner or increase monetization to large brands. In short, good old fashioned business development. Opportunity is out there in so many ways. Simply, I find just keep talking about what you do and how someone can get started to have it too. It works wonders.

The next step is taking action. That is the case with the VRARA Industry Committees . Representatives from companies are collaborating on similar needs and challenges, and working together to set best practices and guidelines for different verticals. Come join us, and you won't feel alone in this VR AR journey that we are all pursuing. 

VRARA Member PTC's Vuforia Takes Top Spot in AR Platforms Competitive Assessment

Original article here

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., May 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- ABI Research ranks PTC's Vuforia platform as the leader among 19 augmented reality platform competitors, with Re'Flekt and Ubimax securing first and second runners-up positions. Recently acquired by PTC, Vuforia's expansive platform offering and demanding market share now combines augmented reality (AR), IoT, and enterprise expertise. This positions Vuforia as the leader in AR platforms, especially when considering the dominant enterprise focus in the market.

"Vuforia's story has several facets that are responsible for its favorable position: ample market experience, a complete portfolio, and a competitive enterprise supplement through PTC," says Eric Abbruzzese, Senior Analyst at ABI Research. "The importance of a strong enterprise play cannot be understated. While the consumer market may be the key to eventual AR ubiquity, the enterprise market is this industry's foundation."

ABI Research's competitive assessment broke competitors into three groups to better reflect the nature of the platforms: software development kit (SDK)-focused, application-focused, and usage-focused. While Vuforia, Re'Flekt, and Ubimax take the top three spots among all companies, each group has its own, distinct winners.

Vuforia, Wikitude, and ARToolKit are top suppliers in the SDK-focused group mainly due to strong machine vision and cloud device support. Aurasma (by HP), Augment, and Blippar score highest in the application-focused group thanks to strong customer footprint, fair pricing, and good developer accessibility. Re'Flekt, Ubimax, and Upskill Skylight are the main three in the usage-focused group due to their strong device support, IoT synergy, and smart glasses support.

"The transition from mobile-first augmented reality to glasses-first augmented reality will create the largest shift among platform players in the future," concludes Abbruzzese. "Mobile device support is a differentiator currently, but platforms with strong smart glasses support, IoT synergy, and integration-ready accessibility position these platforms favorably for the upcoming market transitions."

These findings are from ABI Research's Augmented Reality Platforms competitive assessment. The full report details the complete list of companies and scores, along with detailed scoring reasoning, category definitions, and market positioning insight.

SF Chapter Event: UX and Design Underpin Good VR

Among the individual disciplines that drive VR innovation, UX and design are foundational. This was the central takeaway of VRARA SF's latest chapter event, co-produced by ARVR MunchnLearn

And through discussions of UX tactics such as ray casting, locomotion and teleportation, a theme emerged: The industry needs collaboration and strength in numbers. 

In other words, in these early days of experimentation for the best (and least nausea-inducing) user experiences, developers should work together and share best practices. 

"Experiment, and don't be afraid to break things," said Digital Myths Studio's Rafael Brown. "And when you find things that work, share it back with the rest of us."  

The packed house at San Francisco State University's downtown campus also heard from Oculus' Brian Sharp and Unity's Dylan Urquidi, through the eventful 2.5 hour program. 

SF Chapter Presidents Mike Boland and Emily Olman kicked off the program with insights on the VR industry, and of course updates on the chapter and its members. 

You can see that opening presentation below, and stay tuned for more videos. Special thanks to all the speakers and to our event partners, especially ARVR MunchnLearn

Learn more about the VR/AR Association, San Francisco Chapter here

Why an Association can be a Boon for your VR AR Business

By Mickaël Dailly (original article here)

Expand Your Growth and Network With the VR/AR Association (VRARA)

Zürich – May 5, 2017 – As long as there have been professions, human beings have often seen the need to associate along shared interests. In the past, these were in the form of guilds. Today, they are the modern professional associations representing the numerous professions and endeavours.

These associations are important because of the value they add to these professions and trades. Foremost among these is the bargaining power you get with the strength in numbers. If you are planning to push an agenda within your industry, you are likely to get results and impact when you do it within the umbrella of an association.

Associations also serve as important networking platforms. Because you meet people in your industry who are involved in diverse endeavours in the sector, it is very easy to forge personal and professional relationships that can in the future be transformed into job or business opportunities.

However, you shouldn’t just look at associations in terms of what you can take from them but what you can give in. Many senior professionals in fact join professional associations to add value in the form of knowledge, experience, networks or financial support. Some do it to nurture a new generation of dedicated professionals that will be capable of taking the industry to new heights.

In the context of an industry such as the rapidly developing virtual reality industry, a professional association helps in building a support system and institution infrastructure that will help in guiding this industry to future greatness. Many of the people joining the virtual industry right now are pioneers and a professional association can serve as an anchor point for all the activities that they are engaged in, coalescing their efforts to drive growth, innovation, networking and linkages which are very much needed in an industry that is rapidly in flux.

Because the virtual reality and augmented reality industries are a relatively new phenomenon, many assume that there is no professional organization in this small and still obscure industry. However, there is in fact an association for virtual and augmented reality professionals called The VR/AR Association or VRARA that is already deeply engaged in various activities in the industry.

The VRARA Association

The association was founded in 2015 as a platform for bringing together global experts and professionals in the virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality industry. The association helps to accelerate the growth, knowledge and connections in the industry. Its main mission is to offer a collaborative platform between the best minds in the industry and innovative companies with the aim of accelerating growth, research and development, education, developing industry standards in the virtual reality and augmented reality space. The association also connects member organizations and helps in promoting the products and services of the disparate member organizations.

The VRARA association membership comes from diverse backgrounds including entertainment, retailers, universities, advertising, software developers, academics, content developers, VR hardware developers and developers of the various accessories used in the VR industry.

The VRARA has a presence in various cities around the world through local chapters in those respective cities. Part of the association’s mandate is supporting and promoting the growth and development of these local chapters in the process helping in the dissemination of virtual reality and augmented reality knowledge and expertise at the local level throughout the world.

The association carries out various responsibilities every year that help it meet its objective of fostering collaboration and accelerating growth and development of the industry. These include organizing meetups, conferences, and industry panel discussions. The association also supports research and case studies development work carried out by the disparate local chapters to help build local and global bodywork of knowledge in the virtual reality, mixed reality and augmented reality space. Companies and individuals in the industry interested in expanding their scope and reach can also account on the association for promotion and exposure to the greater industry and market.

What are the Benefits of Joining the VRARA Association?

Perhaps the biggest advantage of the association is its reach and the scope of its activities. There are more than 3400 industry organizations in its directory and it has a mailing list of 15,000, mainly consisting of the best minds in the VR and AR industry. If you want to make things happen and are looking for networks, this is the best platform to reach the right people and make things happen.

The association also has a dedicated staff of 30 located around the world that you can leverage to get to assist you in organizing events, in business development and marketing your VR/AR initiatives.

As a member, you can get access to the VRARA Directory, the most comprehensive yet, of organizations in the world involved in various aspects of virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality.

If you are an expert of thought leader in the industry, you can participate in even steer Industry Committees and work with multiple stakeholders in creating a body of work and best practices that can guide the various industry verticals.

Other perks of VRARA membership include access to attendee passes for all the VRARA events globally, get unrestricted access to all industry reports and publications that have been commission and produced by VRARA; get speaking opportunities on VRARA events or partner events; you can opt to be included in test market campaigns for relevant products and services; get a 50% discount on all industry events and also get featured in VRARA media channels including e-newsletters, podcasts and blogs if you have something to share or showcase. If you are hiring, you can also post your jobs freely in the VRARA jobs boards and get access to a highly skilled pool of VR/AR talent.

What are Some of the VR/AR Events That I Can Attend in 2017?

As a VRARA member, you get generous discounts on all the main VR/AR/MR events globally. Some of these events include the following:-

  • Immersive Architecture Conference IM-ARCH – Venice, Italy June 1st 2017
  • VRARA Birmingham Chapter Launch Event June 5th 2017
  • Up The Ante with the VRARA – The Investor Edition (Los Angeles) June 6 2017
  • VRARA Singapore Chapter Event June 13th 2017
  • SF Chapter: Road to the Holodeck, Lightfields and Volumetric VR June 14 2017
  • VR/AR Association – Kentucky Chapter Event June 21st 2017
  • The WAVE Congress – Birmingham UK June 22nd 2017
  • VRTO – TorontoJune 24th – 26th 2017
  • VR/AR Excellence Days 2017 – Hamburg, GermanyJune 27th – 28th 2017
  • 2nd Global VR/AR China Summit 2017June 29th to 30th 2017
  • Gwangju ACE Fair (Asia Content & Entertainment Fair) – South Korea September 17th – 24th 2017
  • Shop.org LA September 25th – 27th 2017
  • MEC Congress – Berlin September 26th – 28th 2017
  • 2017 Display Summit – Sterling, Virginia October 4th – 5th 2017
  • VRevolution NYC on November 15, 2017

The VRARA Local Chapters

Currently, there are VRARA local chapters in all the major cities of the world. There are 30 chapters in total in all the major cities in Europe, US, the Middle East, Asia, New Zealand, Canada and Australia.

The purpose of a VRARA local chapter is to provide you with a local network and platform to network with other best minds in the industry in your city. Membership in your local VRARA chapter also plugs you in to global opportunities.


The local chapters are run in a structured way according to the VRARA constitution. Each chapter is administered by a Chapter President who carries out a host of local chapter responsibilities such as hosting local VRARA events, organizing industry panel discussions along with presentations and supporting members in the chapter in growing and scaling up their virtual reality and augmented reality business initiatives.  If you live in a city with a local chapter, you can attend the local events and network with the other VR and AR professionals. You can also take it further and leverage your access to the global chapter network to grow your initiatives beyond local borders.

How Do I Form VRARA Chapter in My City?

To form a local VRARA Chapter in your city, you can simply submit an application to the parent organisation to express your interest in forming a local association and becoming a Chapter President. The association requires that every Chapter President be familiar with some of the best minds in AR and VR in their city.

As a Chapter President, it is also important to have good proximity to a network of local thought leaders in the industry. These thought leaders and business leaders don’t necessarily have to be experts in the virtual reality and augmented reality but they should be leaders in industries that are going to directly benefit from innovation in this industry. These will include areas such as advertising, media and entertainment, content producers, the gaming industry etc.

The Chapter responsibilities are not particularly exerting. You will need to put in less than five hours per week handling the various chapter responsibilities such as organizing events, coordinating meetings, onboarding new members to the chapter and coordinating research and case study development in your city. To apply for a local Chapter President position for any inquiries, you can contact the European Memberships and Events Director Mickaël Dailly at md@thevrara.com.

VR/AR Association hosting the biggest tech party in Vancouver for CVR!


The VRARA is an association that accelerates growth, knowledge and connections and what better way to cultivate this mandate by throwing an entertaining night after CVR Industry Day. The Vancouver Chapter led by Dan Burgar is showing the world why this city should be recognized as a top global hub for VR/AR/MR.

CVR has really grown into one of the biggest global VR/AR/MR events in the world, led by one of our chapter Board Directors of the Vancouver Chapter Anne-Marie Enns. The VRARA is fully embracing this event and having the technology be at the forefront by bringing together leaders of all types.

We're hosting the biggest tech party of the year tomorrow Friday, May 5th, with not only leaders in VR/AR/MR like HTC, Google, Microsoft, CognitiveVR, Super Ventures and Meta. But some of the other attendees joining us will include Oracle, Lululemon, CNN, Ford, Accenture, Nasa, Delta, Sony Imageworks, EA, Capcom, Best Buy and many more. 

  • Network with the VR/AR Industry influencers, companies of all types, VCs and thought-leaders of top companies

  • One of Vancouver's hottest musicians Alex Maher, Alex’s music fuses elements of soul, pop, funk, and jazz with insightful lyrics, he utilizes a loop pedal and is called "the one man band"

  • Our VRARA DJ will be spinning all your favorite tunes

  • Amazing street script artist Mega McGrath will be painting live and we'll be auctioning the painting off and the proceeds will go towards the Canuck Place Children's Hospice

  • Futurist, Entrepreneur and Global TV personality Lindsay Smith will be the MC for the night

VR/AR Experiences:

  • IngeniousVR from LA called First Date experience, an exciting interactive virtual reality comedy experiences and more

  • Aloha 360 is a VR experience that brings people to one of the most beautiful places in the world, Kaua’i, Hawai’i. Here they meet one of the most beautiful people in the world, Sabra Kauka, a Hawaiian Kupuna (elder) who is known as a living embodiment of aloha (love). Experience the beauty of this special place as Sabra shares a blessing of Aloha with you. The experience made it's debut at VRLA and NAB 2017. Aloha 360 is directed by award-winning filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer, Josh Thome.


Skyrocket Digital A global digital branding agency offering global services in branding, web app development, ux, ecommerce, digital strategy & social marketing. 

Gowling WLG With a team of over 80 legal professionals, Gowling WLG's Vancouver office is one of the city's leading business law, litigation and intellectual property law firms.

CreativeBC Creative BC is an independent not for profit agency responsible for promoting and developing the creative industries in British Columbia.

Archiact A leader in VR/AR products and content.

BCLC Entertains players with the chance to dream, play and have fun, benefiting the people of British Columbia

BC Lions BC's CFL team, gearing up for the 2017 season

Brainstation BrainStation is a global leader in digital skills training empowering individuals and organizations to achieve digital success through courses, workshops, events and corporate training.

We're proudly supporting Canuck Place Children's Hospice. Canuck Place offers a comprehensive clinical care to over 670 children living with life-threatening illnesses the families who love them throughout British Columbia. The unique program offers world-class health care within a home-like environment. 

Whether a life is measured in days, weeks, or months, children deserve the opportunity to learn, develop and grow. Canuck Place encourages families to live in the moment.

Please contact Dan Burgar (President, VRARA Vancouver) at dan@thevrara.com for any inquiries.

VR/AR Association: What, Where, and Why

By Tom Ffiske, virtualperceptions.com

“The VR/AR Association (The VRARA) is an international organization designed to foster collaboration between innovative companies and people in the virtual reality and augmented reality ecosystem that accelerates growth, fosters research and education, helps develop industry standards, connects member organizations and promotes the services of member companies.”

That is what they say, and they back up what they say. By its nature they have many fingers in many pies, creating an umbrella network which, when tugged correctly, can bring the right people to the right places.

What I particularly like is the strength of its committees; they range from advertising to movie making to fintech, and bring in the right people to discuss common practices and bring insights into its future.

Dennis Adamo from SpaceoutVR particularly likes the organisation as well: “The VRARA has given us the boost we needed to get into the places we need to be. In a short time, the exposure to major strategic partners like the USPS, Venture Capital Investors and Major Corporate clients has given us the opportunity of a lifetime in the VR space. We continuously leverage our VRARA team and member community to gain access to the most important contacts to make our business grow.”

Ultimately it seems to be an interesting organization, and I look forward to keeping track of its growth with time. Much like any spider in the middle of a spiders web, the organization seems to know hat is happening around the world. But unlike a spider, they want to help others grow; like a benevolent spider. Which doesn’t eat people.

Vanessa Radd, President VRARA Singapore Chapter, Featured in Women of Wearables

Original article here

Interview by Marija Butkovic (@MarijaButkovic)

Vanessa Radd, currently flies between Singapore, Shanghai and California, brings +15 years of experience in broadcast (TV Everywhere and LiveTV solutions), tech and VR/AR. Currently, Vanessa is President of the global VR/AR Association Singapore Chapter and heads partnerships in Asia for Holition, a UK-based augmented reality creative agency. Vanessa is ranked among the global Top 10 influencers in Augmented Reality. Vanessa is also the founder of the VR/AR Women in Asia Society and a member of The Media Alliance’ Board of Directors.

What projects are you working on at the moment? What does your current job role entail?

I wear several hats. I work on VR and AR consulting projects and represent several European/American brands in Asia. One of the companies that I represent is Holition, a London-based augmented reality experiential agency that provides immersive augmented reality experiences for luxury brands, entertainment and more. Holition creates beautiful experiences in augmented reality, as seen with the magic mirrors developed for Charlotte Tilbury’s Westfield store in London (which was mentioned in Forbes and New York Times as a retail trend to watch out for) and the virtual try-on makeup app for Coty’s Rimmel ‘Get The Look’ mobile app which won the DigiDay Europe Mobile App of the Year award. Holition also produced the largest augmented reality fashion show for Dunhill in Shanghai that was experienced ‘live’ by the audience present. At Holition, we believe in melding art and technology, to create beautiful experiences.

I’m also the president of the global VR AR Association (VRARA)’s chapter in Singapore. The role I take on is very industry development focused, and together with the members, and my global VRARA colleagues, we aim to promote a vibrant VR/AR ecosystem worldwide.

How long did it take you to be where you are now?

I have always taken a very independent, quintessential path in my career and in my entrepreneurial ventures.

I have a major in accounting, and a content creator’s mind in a career in media and technology. I’ve traversed from tech (software and hardware), to the broadcast and satellite industries, and now, VR and AR. I’m pretty much self-taught throughout my 15+ year career, and at every stage, I’ve taken what I’ve learned, and my skillsets and transitioned to a new product or platform.

In hindsight, perhaps there were early signs in my life of the sort of career path that I was going to get into -- the first website I had to build in one of my university courses was on satellites -- little did I know I would go into this field. It kind of seeked me out. I was also actively involved in the organizing of a regional robotics competitions in one of my earlier jobs, and have worked in helping close the broadcast-digital divide between developing and less developed countries through technology and education. Personally, I’ve always focused on using the right technology to help create content that benefits society-at-large and how it can bring diverse ideas together.

It is a natural progression for me and I feel very fulfilled in what I do in this new medium. In some way, I believe, VR/AR chose and embraced me as much as I’ve embraced it.

What was the biggest obstacle?

Broadcast technology, to many in the media circle, does not necessarily seem sexy as working in the content side of things. But I stuck at it as innovation is my passion. It’s an observation but not an obstacle.

What are the challenges of being an entrepreneur in the niche you are in? How about being a female entrepreneur?

As VR/AR is a nascent industry, people have varying expectations. In the greenfield work that I do, I find that I’m thrust into a position where I have to find the answers myself and educate the market about this new medium, and how it can be utilized. Companies are excited about VR and AR, however, to create beautiful experiences, there are specific instances that work, and some instances where VR and AR do not fit what they seek to do.

And because it’s something new, clients sometimes are not able to gauge and assess what a proper VR/AR creative agency is supposed to provide, and when traditional advertising agencies come into the picture and rebrand themselves as VR/AR companies, it may get even more convoluted. This is where, as president of VRARA’s Singapore Chapter, I’m able to help to set the guidelines on the industry standard for VR and AR to  promote really good quality VR and AR work, for the benefit of the industry and a healthy ecosystem.

Secondly, pundits may come into the picture and want to invent new jargons. We need to circumvent this for the good of the industry.

As for being a female entrepreneur, there may be some few instances where men may ask questions that they might not ask men, even if you are a senior level executive, just to test you. In these instances, you know, you just take it with a smile and some humor. For me, this is all small stuff, don’t sweat it. I think women now, are already very much empowered in this day and age, and there are more opportunities than challenges.

Just hunker down and do the work. People will notice good quality work and strong leadership.

What are your biggest achievements to date?

Being part of a founding organizer-team of a digital-broadcast conference which is running now for over a decade. Growing the VR AR community in Singapore/Asia-Pacific as part of VRARA. Founding the VR/AR Women in Asia society. Being listed as global Top 3 Augmented Reality influencer by Onalytica.

What will be the key trends in the VR and AR in the next 5 years and where do you see it heading?

  • The intersection of AI, IOT and AR/VR will transform the way we work, communicate and collaborate.

  • More great VR arcade/theme park experiences.

  • We live in a 3D world, why not market brands and experience entertainment in 3D.

  • Conversations about security concerns in VR and AR.

  • Exploration of the open source platform in VR and AR.

This is the time to leap, and a very interesting time at that. My hope though, is that VR/AR will not effect a wider digital divide.

Is #WomenInTech and #WomeninVRAR movement important to you and if yes, why?

Personally, I haven’t really being conditioned to think so much about this but I do acknowledge that my gender does give me some opportunities, as well as barriers that come along with the package. It’s recognizing this and utilizing your strengths, being fearless, and taking action with grace.

As founder of VR/AR Women in Asia, I do actively seek out women at events and ask them to join the community. My personal mission is to raise the number of women developers in the field of VR and AR.

Diversity to me is important, and beyond the gender issue, it’s great if #WomenInTech and #WomeninVRAR can help open the doors to conversation on other diversity topics as well. Let us women support each other, and in addition, help to speak up for other groups.

What is the most important piece of advice you can give to all female founders and female entrepreneurs out there?

This has been said before, but I can’t stress enough the importance of true grit. On tough days when people may beat you down or doubt you, at the end of the day, you answer to yourself. Are you going to give up? Or are you going to get up and show up? Myself, being an aikido practitioner, it helps to know how to take falls well, and also getting up and rising for the next battle.

I’ll add to this -- stay curious, maintain a beginner’s mind, and be humble.

Who are your inspirational women in VR and AR industries?

Evelyn Miralles and the inspirational VRARA women.

Twitter: @vanradd

Linkedin: Vanessa Radd

Medium: Vanessa Radd

Podcast with Doug Magyari and the IMMY Mark 1

Learn more about a company called IMMY who has been flying under the radar in regards to their upcoming VR and AR headset, called the IMMY Mark 1 and IMMY Mark 2, from the founder, CEO and CTO, Doug Magyari.

Hear why Doug feels their device will stand out from the more recognizable names in the space and how important it is to him to have it manufactured in the United States.

Also, learn why Doug Magyari was recently invited to the White House to talk about the IMMY Mark 1 and 2 along with his impressions of President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.

Listen here 

Recap of VRARA Russia (St. Petersburg) Chapter Kickoff Event

By Sergey Doudy, Co-President of the Russia Chapter of VRARA

Russia's IT and tech spheres are rapidly growing and show no signs of slowing down, and the VR/AR industry is no exception. With a plethora of talented programmers and forward-looking companies, there is a lot of interest in the development and adoption of VR and AR technologies. The Russia chapter of VRARA held its first meeting in the Russian northern culture capital, St. Petersburg, in April 2017.

We partnered with Peter the Great Saint-Petersburg Polytechnic University, a leading engineering and research institute, to host the event and had a turnout of over 80 people. Three guest companies presented their views and outlooks from the enterprise, education, and entertainment standpoints which gave an in-depth overview of where the VR/AR industry as a whole is moving. We had a unique and fun networking experience before and after the presentations thanks to a guest DJ and creative-thinking contest for a chance to win prizes.

We kicked off the evening with Cerevrum discussing the implications of virtual reality on the sphere of education and the ways VR is drastically changing the way students learn. Cerevrum showed off Skill Hub VR, a unique platform for education which can be employed for an all-encompassing approach allowing for the presentation of empirical material via VR for semantic education.

Next we jumped to our enterprise segment, where Planoplan, one of the co-chairs of VRARA’s real-estate committee, covered the opportunities virtual reality has opened up to real-estate marketing. Planoplan showed its editor, a simple 3D room planner for creating interior design, renderings, VR room tours and calculating home renovation costs which gives would-be homebuyers the ability to virtually “visit” homes from anywhere in the world. Planoplan brought a few mobile VR units to let the audience experience real-estate home and apartment walkthroughs for themselves.

Finally, we dove into VR from the standpoint of entertainment. Panoramik, who create games for various platforms including mobile, social media, and Steam, went over the current state of the VR gaming industry and discussed the pain points it currently faces and the revolutionary future of VR technologies that’s to come. After the presentation, we launched Panoramik’s current VR games on an HTC Vive giving the audience the opportunity to experience the magic of games in virtual space.

We asked our audience to think of the most unique yet viable applications of VR/AR technologies for the future and awarded the top 2 creators of the best answers with mobile VR units from Fibrum and Piligrim XXI. The most creative answer actually warranted the top prize - an opportunity for an internship in one of St. Petersburg's game and VR development studios.

The Russian chapter of VRARA will hold a meetup every quarter and will alternate between St. Petersburg and Moscow for the meeting locations where attendees can learn about the fast-paced world of VR/AR and immerse themselves in the world of virtual reality firsthand. VRARA members and interested public alike: we will be happy to see you at our next event!

If you want to stay updated on industry trends, major news and gadgets alike, join our newsletter today http://www.thevrara.com/newsletter/

To get in touch with Michael Doudy and Sergey Doudy, the co-presidents of the Russian Chapter of VRARA, see the contact info here http://www.thevrara.com/st-petersburg/

Bay Area: Come Talk About Lightfields with Us (6/14)

Register here. VRARA members, choose the member option at checkout. 

For the VR/AR Association's next San Francisco chapter event, we'll dive into lightfields. Join us on June 14 for an evening of networking, food and illuminating discussion.

We'll examine the future outlook, as well as work being done today for volumetric photo capture in interior spaces like real estate. 

What's a lightfield, you ask?

Several technologies are required for VR's holy grail: the fabled holodeck. We already have graphical VR experiences that let us move throughout volumentric spaces, such as video games. And we have photorealistic media that lets us look around a 360 plane from a fixed position (a.k.a. head tracking).

But what about the best of both worlds?

We're talking volumetric spaces in which you can move around, but are also photorealistic. In addition to things like positional tracking and lots of processing horsepower, the heart of this vision is lightfields. They define how photons hit our eyes and render what we see.

Because it's a challenge to capture photorealistic imagery from every possible angle in a given space -- as our eyes do in real reality -- the art of lightfields in VR involves extrapolating many vantage points, once a fixed point is captured. And that requires clever algorithms, processing, and whole lot of data.

Join us on June 14 to learn more about this key lynchpin in VR's future

Register here. VRARA members, choose the member option at checkout. 


Ryan Damm, Lightfield Thought Leader, Co-Founder, Visby

Additional speakers to be announced


Learn more about the VR/AR Association, San Francisco Chapter here

And Facebook Rules the (VR & AR) World

Facebook just made a few huge announcements at F8.

Deep Neural Networks, AR and Facebook Surround 360 will change how people live their lives. Hear me out, with the ability to model complex non-linear relationships; Deep Neural Networks (i..e, "brain click") will power everyday tasks with an AR interaction. In other words, if you want to leave a message on the fridge for your roommate, the device will record the location with GPS and the geometry of that environment in order for your roommate with their device to read it.

Likewise, your phone’s camera is becoming the tool for ubiquitous AR. Facebook opened its AR platform to developers to build on top of the ‘basic effects’ already available to users. As a result, people will expect  to see more fun effects but also practical applications digitally layered on your morning commute to the office. Think PokemonGo but for real life.

And finally, let’s not forget about VR/360. Facebook unveiled a preview at F82017. The new Facebook Surround 360 will offer  6 camera and 24 camera designs with ‘depth-estimation algorithms.’ This essentially enables users to film and render content that is more life-like and immersive. For example, the ability to walk in a 360 space in real time, seeing the space change as you move throughout. Think the holodeck from Star Trek! Okay maybe I’m just as excited as Mark but you get my point.

So as I said earlier, Facebook will change how people live their lives and I can’t wait.

Take our VRARA Survey: Challenges for Healthcare related VR AR Companies

Are you a VR/AR healthcare product/service provider? The VRARA Digital Health Committee would like to ask you a few questions about the current challenges that you face bringing your product to the healthcare market. The results will be anonymous and published to help the VR AR community and the healthcare industry. If you have a spare minute or two to answer these few questions below, we would greatly appreciate it. Access survey here

VR/AR Association Fintech Industry Committee


Another move toward infusing finances and growth to the mixed realities industries was marked last week with the appointment of Devexperts, developers of financial markets and providers of cloud-based financial data infrastructures. In conjunction with this new alignment of forces, Devexperts has also set in motion an initiative to found the VRARA FinTech Committee. This may result in a significant growth boom in the industry, which is certainly their hope. Kris Kolo, Global Executive Director of the VR/AR Association, explains, “Devexperts has been an established leader in FinTech solutions and services for the Capital Markets industry, and once again challenging the market with this new technology for Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality financial analytical applications. We are excited Devexperts have joined the VR/AR Association and are Co-Chairing our FinTech Industry Committee.”

Devexperts Becomes a Co-Chairing Member of the Global VR/AR Association Fintech Industry Committee

DEVEXPERTS, developers of the financial markets' most successful professional retail and institutional trading platforms and providers of one of the largest cloud-based financial data infrastructures, is pleased to announce that they have become the newest member of the VR/AR Association, the global industry association for Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and Mixed Reality, connecting leading solution providers with brands and customers.

Both the VR/AR Association and Devexperts are dedicated to fostering growth in the virtual reality and augmented reality industries. As a member, Devexperts will participate in the association's initiatives to facilitate VR/AR market growth in a joint effort with other solution providers.  In addition, Devexperts has put forward an initiative to found The VRARA FinTech Committee.


To accelerate widespread adoption of VR/AR technology by traditional financial companies (banks, brokers, exchanges), technological FinTech firms and startups around the world in order to improve the customer experience, deliver analytical power, innovative visualizations, gamification and new dimensions of interactivity to user interfaces, and introduce innovative ideas of Mixed Reality collaboration.

One of the main goals of The VRARA FinTech Committee is to analyze the current challenges of industry players and propose innovative and relevant solutions that will help boost the value of VR/AR in the FinTech vertical. The committee will also conduct research with end users for a better understanding of how visualization of large amount of information and the immersion in it influences the quality of financial and analytical decision-making.

"Devexperts has been an established leader in FinTech solutions and services for the Capital Markets industry, and once again challenging the market with this new technology for Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality financial analytical applications. We are excited Devexperts have joined the VR/AR Association and are Co-Chairing our FinTech Industry Committee," says Kris Kolo, Global Executive Director of the VR/AR Association.

"We are excited to become a Co-Chairing FinTech committee member in the VR/AR Association and help to make financial data analytics and market data visualization intuitive and reliable in the Virtual and Augmented Reality space," says Dmitry Parilov, Managing Director, dxFeed Data Solutions and Products, Devexperts. "We believe that VR is going to break into our daily life soon and together with The VRARA we see our main role in promoting and supporting the philosophy, the members and developers to make it available to everybody."

About Devexperts:

Headquartered in Munich, Germany, Devexperts, was founded in 2002 and specializes in the development of highly complex software solutions and services for the global Capital Markets industry. Our clients are retail and institutional brokerage houses, exchanges and buy-side firms. The high performance, scalability and integration capabilities of our products and services, along with 24x7x365 monitoring and support, result in some of the global financial industry's most recognized and reliable technology applications. Millions of people trade daily using Devexperts technology.

Media Contact:  

Kris Kolo
VR/AR Association

Dmitry Parilov
Managing Director, dxFeed Solutions and Products, Devexperts
USA: +1-201-3714130
Germany: +49-89-99952024

Related Links

Devexperts website