Kansas City-based technology start up Northpass Immersive has revealed Bella VR, with the aim of bringing the virtual reality (VR) product to the medical sector.
As VR continues to become more accessible and reduce in size and cost, Northpass Immersive has launched Bella VR, an intuitive VR platform that aims to help patients deal with pain and anxiety by escaping to virtual worlds. By using gaze-based navigation Bella VR offers patients a simple way to use the product and removes the need for a controller or direct input method. Alongside this breakthrough innovation, Bella VR also features an auto-horizon adjustment feature to accommodate those who want to use the product while lying down. By calibrating and adjusting the unit’s horizon to match the patient’s current angle, Bella VR is able to be used in any position.
Northpass Immersive co-founder and president Reid Bangert commented on gaze-based navigation by stating: “We were determined to eliminate the controller, because if you hit a wrong button and you can’t see the remote it causes lots of problems and frustrations,” going on to mention the auto-horizon functionality, saying: “This is a huge breakthrough, if you are sitting at a 45-degree angle without the auto-horizon adjust, you have to look down to be level in the experience. If you are flat on your back, you’d have to look completely down your body to get the full experience. We wanted patients to be able to relax completely.”
Thanks to the design of Bella VR there is no need for a computer or cables which means that the unit is suitable for the busy healthcare environment. This reduces any frustration in setting up, taking only a few seconds to organise. Additionally, the system can be cleaned with sanitizing multi-surface wipes to keep units free of germs and bacteria.
Bella VR includes a number of different experiences that patients can enjoy including a canoe trip, a breathtaking hot-air balloon ride over New Mexico, a scenic trip up the gondola at Banff National Park in the Canadian Rockies and a live quartet concert. Multiple studies, including one from the University of Washington, have confirmed that VR can help patients cope with pain and anxiety. The immersive sensory experiences, complete with audio, could be the next tool that medical professionals use to help treat patients and lower stress and pain during treatment or visits.
VRFocus will bring you more on Bella VR and Northpass Immersive as further updates are released.