According to a recent post by Corbin Ball, virtual reality (VR) & augmented reality (AR) are one of the 9 Amazing Meeting Trends to Watch in 2016. Furthermore, the widespread popularity of applications like Pokemon Go and Ink Hunter have proven the public’s interest in augmented-reality and opened the floodgates for VR to seep into more and more aspects of daily life.

As meeting planners strive to incorporate the newest technology into their events, this will undoubtedly extend to event planning and design, and has the potential to completely overhaul the events industry. Read on for 5 cool ways you can incorporate VR & AR into your meetings and events!

Meeting Tomorrow provides Samsung Gear VR Headset rentals along with Samsung Galaxy S6 & S7 rentals for conferences and events nationwide.

1. Demonstrate products at trade shows & conferences.

Product demonstrations are a huge part of trade shows. Imagine using virtual reality headsets as a way to give booth visitors an interactive demonstration of your products without even needing them there. This is especially a great opportunity to display large, bulky products where it would normally be very hard (or impossible!) to get them to the show.

2. Engage attendees with VR gamification.

VR software and image recognition technology makes it easy to create simple games such as scavenger hunts at your events. Simply place virtual clues around your booth and allow attendees to interact with objects to find more clues and win prizes. Want something more advanced? Your imagination is truly the limit. Just consult a VR savvy developer or production company to put together a custom event experience.

3. Execute fully immersive site surveys.

Although 3D computer models of exhibit halls and other event venues can give offsite viewers a scale view of the event space, virtual reality has the power to fully immerse them within the environment. Imagine being able to physically walk through an event space while moving through your office building. Sounds cool, right? You can also bring this experience to your shows and allow guests to walk through custom designed environments or even obstacle courses!

4. Host interactive, 360 degree virtual meetings.

With VR, remote attendees can direct their experience as if they were really present during an event. Advanced 360-degree cameras and perspective mean it’s possible for them to see others in the room as if they were right there alongside them. Additionally, teams can utilize augmented reality to view and manipulate objects together in real time. This mixed reality combination allows modern teams and attendees to interact in a completely new way.

5. Attend shows as a robotic, VR attendee.

As far back as 2013, it was possible to move around and interact with attendees at an actual event (see video below). Now we’re even closer to a world where we don’t even have to travel or book a hotel to go to a trade show! While many believe there is nothing more powerful than in-person interactions and meetings, this is a great opportunity to bring the complete attendee experience to those who are unable to travel.

Have other ideas for implementing virtual reality at conferences & events? Reach out to us on Twitter!