The manner in which virtual reality is impacting today’s world; it is no longer a virtual concept – it is a reality now. It is disrupting the technological landscape in a big way and emerging as one of the most important inventions of the 21st century. From realistic training simulations to interactive learning environments to even 3D holographic communication, these VR trends have immense potential to transform the world that we see today. Virtual reality’s ability to offer countless solutions has made it a highly profitable and lucrative proposition for businesses. A recent study states in no less clear terms that the virtual reality market is expected to reach $26.95 billion by 2022 – which is currently valued just over $2 billion – with a growth rate of 54% per year from 2017 onwards. Another report from Sketchfab provides a comprehensive overview of VR Industry, which reveals 83.2% of the surveyed population has experienced VR in some capacity. This is certainly the most positive curve in the journey of virtual reality. Along with VR, augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) technologies are destined to revolutionize the tech world. Many technological giants aren’t also shying away to show their sweet-tooth for virtual reality. Facebook is coming up with a standalone virtual reality headset, “Oculus Go” in order to turn it into a mass-market phenomenon. Amazon, on the other hand, is assembling a team to create a virtual-reality (VR) platform for “immersive storytelling”. In addition to that, software development companies, advertising and marketing firms and eCommerce businesses are utilizing VR technology in one way or the other. Here are five trends that will prove to be most impactful in coming days: #1. Increased immersive experience The only senses that have been associated with virtual reality until now were vision and sound. It’s time to go beyond them and explore ways to provide more immersive experience. In light of this, a serious progress is being made in order to involve other senses. Many industry experts have already started working to develop gadgets that will provide sensory experiences like touch and smell. This is precisely why “Oculus Rift” had been making waves with their advanced headsets, which prompted Facebook to acquire the company in 2014. Furthermore, Gannet, an American technology firm is specialized in developing immersive contents that enable users to live the stories as first persons. Therefore, it is not surprising to learn that there will be more innovative VR tools we are going to witness ahead. #2. Gaming is going to get a huge boost The gaming industry has made a significant advancement in the past decade; VR technology is only going to give it a huge shot in the arm. Developers are creating 3D simulations for the ultimate gaming experience that will be felt much like living objects are teleported from r the al world into the console. It will be a path-breaking achievement, especially for gamers as they could visit an alien world/exotic location or could perform things that can’t be possible otherwise. “Nosulus Rift” is one such VR game that uses sensors activated through inaudible sound waves, which in turn creates a sense of fart smell. Each time the player activates sensors, an odor’s puff is triggered. Moreover, “Pokemon Go” has been a great success of augmented reality gaming, which switches between an augmented world and a fantasy world. #3. Dramatic transformation of healthcare industry Virtual reality has a promising future in healthcare industry, which can provide life-saving solutions in order to overhaul the patient-physician experience. A great progress has already been made in this regard by using VR to simulate surgery, treat phobias and signify the diagnosis process. The following VR trends can transform the healthcare sector: Hands-on experience in medical education: VR technology can effectively be used to promote real-life hands-on experience to medical students with the help of instructional instructors. This approach will decrease students’ anxiety along with increasing their experience in a virtual setting. Improved patient monitoring during surgery: VR technology can be used to create a virtual environment without a single point of focus in order to effectively monitor and observe serious patients. Virtual reality as a pain killer: VR can be used for incorporating alternative treatment. There have been successful experiments in addressing acute pain through distraction. It has a huge potential for patient relaxation, assessment and treatment of post traumatic stress disorder. More detailed medical imaging: The EchoPixel 3D technology is gradually impacting the medical world by converting ultrasound, CT scan and MRI images into 3D format. These detailed images in turn provide medical practitioners greater understanding of human body and diseases. #4. VR shopping in real-time E-commerce is on the verge of creating history thanks to virtual reality, and we are going to see radical changes in this industry. An appropriate example of this is shoppers will be able to try on clothes while staying at home. Developers are preparing to create a unique experience that will allow consumers to download and print a 3D mould to ensure that the clothes are comfortable and fit. In addition to that, the evolving VR technology is going to make way for the implementation of improved sensory devices, customers will be able to test smells and flavors in order to purchase items. In view of this, Facebook 360 allows users to navigate 360 degrees – an innovative way to try on makeup through their smartphones. Google cardboard, on the other hand, provides low-cost solution that is going to transform smartphones into headsets, which can prove a profound leap in e-commerce business. #5. Travel and tourism are going to stand out Virtual reality can equally disrupt travel and tourism sector. Picture this: a new technology comes that creates an experience which virtually teleports a person and makes him to believe that he is somewhere else – a place where he has been longing to visit. This is not a scene from a sci-fi movie, not even a distant reality; it is very much in the offing where families can be virtually present at destinations they are seeking. This trend can serve one more purpose for travel and tourism businesses in that users can immerse themselves in new travel destinations, possibly increasing their interest in actually visiting them. Moreover, VR technology can be boon for hotels and their guests because it can potentially provide them information as well as entertainment. They can get information regarding local points of interest along with the picturesque glimpses of great nearby destinations. The Road Ahead The above trends notwithstanding, much of the impacts of the virtual reality have been chiefly on gaming, filmmaking and other forms of entertainment. However, the future seems completely loaded with its insurmountable possibilities. A good example is its ability to become the new-age computing platform. According to some experts, Nanotech VR can be used in the future that will push human boundaries to the next level and allow us enter into the digital realm. This technology will superimpose us on the virtual environment where our brain will be uploaded into computer system or network. Until a few years ago, 3D movies were a distant dream, but they are commonplace now. We certainly don’t know which new technology is going to surprise us, but virtual reality has traversed an impressive path so far, and also has a long way to go ahead.