Why it's useful.
Connecting experiences is what it’s all about. By using emerging technology in a new way, we’re able to transform business offerings without company-wide implications. Innovation lets iFLY provide a unique customer experience innovation and attract new customers without making any changes to their infrastructure or adding significant capital investment.
Rethinking a bucket-list staple.
Jumping out of a plane at over 10,000 feet is an experience people often try only once in a lifetime. And some may never dare to take that leap of faith. But what if you could get that same rush of adrenaline without ever jumping out of a plane? iFLY had the right idea to attract thrill-seekers and scaredy-cats alike. Their indoor skydiving simulators give customers the sensation of human flight without the actual freefall. But they were missing one of the senses in that sensation: sight.
Rapidly brainstorming a better experience.
Meanwhile, Material had been experimenting with VR projects for years and we were ready for a new challenge. When thinking of VR, our team naturally drifted toward ways of experiencing things you might otherwise be too afraid to try. Like replicating skydiving for the ultimate interactive customer experience.
With iFLY right up the road, we had our match. We stitched together existing 360-degree and VR-ready footage from skydiving, base jumping and wing suit jumps and optimized the material to make it work with iFLY. And the Samsung Gear VR helmet worked great with their existing gear.
The project came together in just two weeks from concept to completion.
We really enhanced the experience without changing the infastructure.
We had to know. Could we recreate that rush chased by skydivers around the world? With the help of World Championship Skydiver Chris Dixon (who has over 2,500 jumps under his belt), we put the tech to the test. We were hoping to offer him that same surge of adrenaline he receives from a human flight, without the cost or time required of traditional skydiving.
We passed with flying colors.
The beauty of VR is that it tricks your brain and transports you to a new experience. This test proved that you can enhance the experience, without changing the infrastructure.
For businesses, it’s a useful way to build and innovate using interactive product design without a large capital investment. For the folks that may have health issues or lack the gumption of a pro skydiver, it’s a bucket list experience that’s finally attainable.
Looking to the horizon.
Our goal is to continue to test and discover the potential new services and opportunities that VR can provide. To bring new and useful ways of leveraging emerging technology like VR not only to change the customer experience, but also empower businesses to significantly drive revenue and stay competitive in the digital age.
Material and iFLY Test Out Adding VR to Indoor Skydiving, 512 Tech by Austin American-Statesman
1stVR skydiving experience
TwoWeeks rapid prototyping
ZeroChanges in iFly infastructure