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A WOMAN holding a vr gear
IKEA HIGHLIGHTS 2016
VIRTUAL REALITY
- INTO THE MAGIC
WRITER: THERESE ÅKESSON
BACKGROUND
IMAGINE EXPERIENCING EVERY MOMENT the way an excited 5-year old experiences the winter holidays. It’s like stepping into a fairytale - but better! The game is on. Now you’ll be able to walk around a real size, make-believe 3D kitchen and interact with objects.
Once inside, you’ll be equipped with two wands, which let you navigate freely and try out all the cool stuff. For instance, with a simple click you can change the colour of cabinets and drawers. So let’s fantasize - if there were NO limits to your desires, what would your kitchen look like? What would it feel like?
”Virtual reality is developing fast and in five to ten years it will be an integrated part of people’s lives. We see that it will play a major role in the future, for instance it could be used to enable people to try out a variety of home furnishing solutions before buying them,” says Jesper Brodin, IKEA Range & Supply Manager.
IT’S EDGY. Thanks to the room-scale motion tracking, you can easily walk around and do some of those basic kitchen tasks. Open drawers and oven doors. Recycle the vegetable skins in the waste sorting station. Browse the new IKEA Catalogue, discover the pencils, pick up a frying pan and place it on the stove… And when weird stuff happens, like when you’re frying and tossing around veggie balls for the 18th time cause it’s so much fun that you just can’t stop, you suddenly come to understand the beauty of it all: It helps you imagine what it would be like to have this kitchen in your real home.
“The release was made in the name of co-creation. We hoped to receive feedback from people on what they wanted to do more of and if the virtual reality experience was of interest. Surprisingly, the most wanted feature was - meatballs!”, says Martin Enthed, IT Manager for IKEA Communications.
We hoped to receive feedback from people on what they wanted to do more of and if the virtual reality experience was of interest. Surprisingly, the most wanted feature was – meatballs.
OH, AND IF YOU’VE always dreamed of being a kid again, here’s your chance. Handily, the test app also features the ability to shrink yourself and move around the kitchen in the size of a 3.3 ft (100 cm) tall child. Walking around in someone else’s shoes (besides having a laugh) allow you to check whether any of the door frames or counter tops would pose a danger to your friends and family. You can also enlarge yourself and experience it as 6.4 ft (195 cm) tall adult. Yet, you don’t want to stop there. There’s a teleport function as well (just in case you want to know what it feels like to zap yourself between the oven and the table in the blink of an eye).
After 5-10 minutes of playing around you take your virtual reality headset off, feeling fascinated. If you want to get lost inside the kitchen, try it at steampowered.com
KINDA MAGICAL, ISN’T IT?
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FACTS
ABOUT IKEA VIRTUAL REALITY KITCHEN EXPERIENCE
The IKEA organisation is one of few businesses leading the virtual reality revolution by producing original content. So far, its test app has generated 1200 articles around the world. The IKEA virtual reality experience was released on Valve’s game platform Steam in April 2016 and was made in collaboration with the French company Allegorithmic, using Unreal Engine 4 from Epic Games. The app is developed for HTC Vive, and will coninuously be updated until December 2016.
linevr playingVR
It’s when you’ve put the headset on that it happens: Your eyes open up to a totally different room from where you know your feet are standing.
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MEET BILLY AT HIS
COUNTRYSIDE BIRTHPLACE
He has been around for nearly four decades. Most of us have either lived with him or gotten to know him at a friend’s place. Come along and meet BILLY at his countryside birthplace where about 4.5 million BILLY bookcases see daylight each year.
Get the full story about the BILLY production
PROTECTING DESKS
… AND THE PLANET
Why not take recycling one step further and actually make new products out of waste? A few years back, someone at IKEA had this ‘crazy idea’… But now, this is turning into reality, saving money for the customers and finite resources for Mother Earth.
Learn more about the crazy idea
PEEKING INTO THE WORLD’S
LARGEST PRINT PRODUCTION
Translated into 33 languages, in 48 different markets, reaching about 255 million people, this year’s IKEA Catalogue welcomed everyone to be themselves. The statement was clear: IKEA doesn’t design furniture for consumers - they design for people. And the reality? People are human, and humans are not perfect.
Get a peek behind the scenes
FURNITURE MADE OUT OF PAPER. NO, SERIOUSLY!
Sofas and chairs made from the same stuff as egg cartons? And bench tops and table legs made from bamboo? Anything is possible as IKEA design-teams explore a world of materials.
Learn more about new materials
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IKEA HIGHLIGHTS
Many companies, organisations and people, together, shape IKEA. Each and every person, idea and solution contribute to the big picture. IKEA Highlights collects stories from different parts of the IKEA world to describe this year’s accomplishments, quirks and maybe even a few slips. Good thing we’re all human.
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A FORCE FOR GOOD DESIGN
A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, David Wahl was given a mission. A young IKEA designer, David was asked to produce a unique object that could defeat the darkness in homes across the planet, bringing light and hope to the many. The result was the IKEA PS Pendant lamp: a planet-like lighting fixture that ‘explodes’ at the pull of a string, spilling warm, glorious light across surrounding spaces.
Read the full story about the IKEA PS Pendant lamp
MOST THINGS STILL
REMAIN TO BE DONE
Have you ever wondered where IKEA came from? Or how a simple country boy from Småland was inspired to create one of the world’s leading brands and help create a better everyday life for millions of people?
Find the answers in the full story