Questions Technology

How does virtual reality work?

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Andrea Vurlow

Living life on my own terms

A life-changing advancement of the 21st century was the introduction of Virtual Reality. 

What is Virtual Reality?

In simple terms, Virtual reality is a computer-generated 3D representation of an environment, in which a user can interact using special kinds of equipment, just like interacting with a real-life environment. Virtual Reality stimulates 4-5 senses like vision, hearing, touch, smell, etc. by generating highly realistic images and sounds. Using VR headsets, VR gloves, VR stick, etc a user can perform different activities like moving around the VR world, playing games, etc.

Let us now focus on the working principle of Virtual Reality.

The key principle behind the working of Virtual Reality is by stimulating our vision and generate a 3D world.  VR headsets project the same scene in two slightly different angles to each eye, along with other techniques like parallax, shading, etc., to simulate depth. The visuals to be projected are fed into the VR headset using an HDMI cable connected to a PC or a smartphone. Now, to ensure high-quality VR projection, the minimum frame rate of 60fps is required along with compatible refresh rate, minimum 100 degrees of FOV (Field of View).

The fps is a measure of the speed at which a GPU can process the images, the refresh rate is the rate at which the VR display renders the image, and the FOV is the extent to which the VR headset supports the display. The response time, i.e., the time gap between the action performed by the user and the response displayed in the screen should be less than 20 milliseconds, to stimulate the brain.

The use of sound properly synced with images can create more engaging effects. High-end Virtual Headsets also uses head and eye tracking for higher precision and accuracy of movements.


Poonam Sharma

Create your own magic

Virtual reality can be defined as a method which you will need to create a computer-generated environment which will land the user into the world of virtual concept. The moment we put the VR headset that will take us up to a well designed simulated set-up which will make us feel complete away from the actual world. VR may include 4 out of 5 human senses, which includes vision, touch, hearing, and may or may not smell. The technology is undoubtedly an exciting one, although it has still many more to deliver in respect to hardware and software to gain the desired traction.

Now the question which needs to be answered here is how virtual reality work will create an impact on the audience.

Well, the fact is that VR will require several devices which will include headset, a computer or Smartphone or some other machine which can create a realistic digital environment, and also a device for motion tracking in various cases. 

The principal subject of virtual reality is to make the simulation of the vision. The headset will target to make a perfect approach towards creating a warm 3D environment. Every individual VR headset puts forward a screen right in front of your eyes by eliminating all interaction with this real world. Use of Two lenses for autofocus is made to place in between the screen and audience eyes which you can adjust depending on individual movement as well as positioning of an eye. The visuals which will be coming up on the screen are rendered with use of a mobile phone or an HDMI cable which will be connected to a PC.

There will be many vendors who will make the application of lenses to change the flat images into a three-dimensional one. In general, a 100/110-degree field of sight can be achieved using VR devices. The very next important thing will be the frame rate per second.  Well, it should be about 60 fps minimum to turn virtual simulations into a realistic one. Available options for user interactions:

• Head tracking: Head tracking system present in VR headsets will follow the movements of the head to all sides and all angles. 

• Eye tracking:   Some of the earphones come with an infrared controller which will be used to track the direction of the viewer’s eyes inside the virtual environment. It offers highly realistic as well as the broader field of view. 

• Motion tracking: Optical tracking is a camera present on the headset which will be needed to follow the movements.  On the other hand non-optical defines the use of different types of sensors present on any device or anybody. If you check the existing devices, you will find that it combines both the options.

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