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The world’s first VR water slide opens in Germany

The world’s first VR water slide opens in Germany

If you thought water slides were exciting on their own, think again. Tech company Ballast has decided the humble water slide needed to be brought into the 21st century, hence the development of the VRSlide concept.

VRSlide_Ballast

Designed in California, the VRSlide is the world’s first virtual reality water slide which opened recently at the Galaxy Erding theme park in Germany. The VR headsets utilise Samsung Galaxy S8 handsets which are custom designed to run VR software and are completely waterproof. These headsets are placed on the user at the start of the water slide, after selecting 1 of 3 experience modes, before they speed off down the slide.

As the user travels along the water slide, specially placed sensors around the slide provide feedback to the headset to sync the users movements throughout – making sure that what they are seeing relates to the ride itself. Once finished, the headsets are placed on a wireless charging stand to enable quick and easy re-use throughout the day.

The graphics are what you would have expected to see 10 years ago and seem to be lacking the ‘thrill’ of the ride. The VRSlide is only demonstrated on a water slide with an inflatable ring, however developer Ballast is developing concepts for aquatic VR and hope to release a fully immersive underwater VR experience in the near future.

Though the 3D VR graphics are rather lacking in quality or realism, even if they did provide a fully cinematic experience would they really be necessary on what is already a fun ride? Do you think certain activities should remain screen-free?

Source: The Verge