Digital Experiences: Boon or Bane?

October 23, 2020

Img Source: 

It’s not unusual for new technology to face resistance and for it to be greeted with apprehension. It’s a recognized phase in the adoption process of technology that all new inventions and discoveries must go through.

And that fear of the unknown plays a big part in this phenomenon. For example, when we first digitalized communications through electronic mail (we all say email now), there were two major points of opposition.

The first, was that the tech would never be enough to send large amounts of data over attachments, with people worried the Internet would break one day when people started attaching pictures, music, video… but look at where we are today, streaming movies in high definition, with 5G technology now rolling out in many countries promising bandwidths that put most phone storage sizes to shame.

The second was perhaps more of an empirical argument: that digital communications would cause us to become less personal and less… human. For sure, digital communications have made paper mail all but extinct: today, most developed countries even see paper mail as physical spam (this guy collected 25 kilos of junk mail in one year), but back when people were just beginning to use email, they were worried that communications would become less personal, and less meaningful.

So maybe the concern could be true to a certain extent, but tell that to entire generations of people who made friends and fell in love and kept their relationships online!

Keeping our humanity

At OVR, we’re very proud of the product we’re building in the shape of an Augmented Reality app that gives people the most human, most realistic digital experience possible. All on a regular smartphone!

When we say that we are truly passionate about enhancing experiences for people, rather than providing a mere alternative experience, we mean it. In a world where we are increasingly digital, we are all the more cognizant of the fact that we must take care that we do not aimlessly digitalize just for the sake of it. What we want, instead, is to create value for people, to help them get the most out of technology, and to improve their lives, not replace or take away from them.

In fact, you can even customize the OVR Assistant to fit the needs you require (besides customizing the look). Your shopping assistant can become your tourist guide, giving you as much information about all the things you are seeing when visiting a new place. It can even be your companion down memory lane, helping you replay and relive your most treasured memories. It can even be a driving buddy if that’s what you want! 

Keeping people connected

Img Source: 

But where others have created digital assistants that seem to take on their own persona, we use artificial intelligence and machine learning to create a digital assistant that constantly learns about what you like and what you want, to eventually be as helpful as possible, in a non-intrusive way to help you make the most out of your augmented reality experience.

You can dismiss the assistant at any time, and interact instead with other people you know on the App, talking, moving and engaging with their lifeline Avatars — in fact we recommend you take advantage of being able to see, hear and interact with others just as you would in real life!

We think that it’s perfectly acceptable to want to find a way to keep connected to people, even in a world where remote is not just possible, but necessary. In a world where we may be forced to be cut off from each other physically, we can still find ways to remain connected digitally, yet with as much of our humanity kept intact.

Media professor Douglas Rushkoff once said:

“The real reason why digital technology will continue to compromise human cognition and well-being is that the companies dominating the space are run by people with no knowledge of human society or history.”

We do agree that keeping things only digital and only virtual may put us in danger of losing our humanity. And so we develop in this space, always reminding ourselves to learn about human society and history. With Augmented Reality, and keeping to the principles of what defines us as people, we hope that digital technology preserves our humanness, instead of diminishing it.

So the next time you’re thinking about Facetime or Zoom, and are feeling tired of not being able to feel like the person you’re talking to is next to you, why not pick up OVR and try see how it feels like to be in the same space, without being in the same room?