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Augment your world: Virtual reality summit comes to NZ
Fri, 31st Mar 2017
FYI, this story is more than a year old

These days, reality is more loosely defined. Virtual reality and augmented reality are blazing a trail in the entertainment and service industries. VR and AR are predicted to reach an industry of $200 billion in the next three years, and it's going to be hard to ignore the changes it will bring to our every day life.

You can virtually tour resorts before you even step on the plane to go on vacation. Playing golf in the middle of Queen street? No problem. As you drive through your city, you can see directions, landmarks and restaurant recommendations literally appear before your eyes. It feels like something out of a movie based in the dystopian future, but this is all very real and happening right now.

The possibilities are endless, and for New Zealanders there is an upcoming opportunity to check out where the VR and AR world is at, and where it could go.

Matt Coleman is the creator of Magnify Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality Expo and Business Summit which is coming to New Zealand on the 7th and 8th of May of this year, to coincide with Tech Week 2017.

“When we held the first summit on this topic a year ago, it seemed that AR/VR was about to become big. In the past year, a groundswell of incredible technology has built up and is about to break,” says Coleman.

“PokemonGo showed us just how potent the AR games marketplace is – who'd have thought we'd be catching creatures on the very streets we walk to work? Now it's a reality and the sky is the limit.

Sunday May 7th marks the Public Day, where ticket holders have the chance to view and experience the latest breakthroughs in gaming and hardware from HP, and to actually test out games on the latest VR and AR equipment. A huge range of products from local and international business will be on display, as well as free panel sessions with experts for those thirsty for more knowledge on the industry. Managing director of HP New Zealand Grant Hopkins says that “Megatrends are driving industry change for Blended Reality and 3D transformation.

“Bringing together the physical and digital worlds is the essence of HP's Blended Reality innovation and it is central to our strategy for thriving in tomorrow's world. We are excited to be part of Magnify 2017 and to showcase the technology of the future, today.

On Monday the 8th, the summit is happening. With a huge lineup of unrivaled speakers, topics including Hollywood, Tourism, Gaming, VR/AR in China, Finance and Investment will all be covered.

Panel topics include:

  • How to sell AR/VR to your Boss
  • Facial Recognition keynote, How did they achieve 300 million downloads?
  • Top Hollywood creators from California/Media
  • How does the finance industry use AR/VR
  • Tourism opportunities for AR/VR and case studies of actual projects
  • Gaming discussions and new releases

“The Summit line-up is incredible and is essential participation for anyone wanting to hear how AR/VR is going to present opportunities and disrupt industries in the near future,” says Coleman.

“People in film and media, event creators, businesses involved in travel and tourism, design and architecture, transport and infrastructure planners, service industries, education, entertainment and more – all should make the journey to Magnify on the 8th May.

Tickets are on sale until the 17th of April. Tickets for the public day start at $25 per person, or $45 for a family pass. Access to both days comes at $299 per person or $150 for students.