We have always been imagining a digital future where we can live in our fantasies taking a break from the real world. Virtual Reality is taking our lives forward in this particular dimension. Better than the existing entertainment systems, it is giving a whole new meaning to escapism with enhanced levels of immersive experiences.
Added to all this, it being closely related to video games – has become quite attractive to kids. Currently, PlayStation VR is the only console compatible industry platform. But it is not recommended for children aged below 12.
However, the potential of VR is far more extensive than purely recreational. With rapid advancements within this technology, experts recommend using different devices based on the age of children.
For Children Under 12
For this age group of children, the best VR glasses are the Google Cardboard or Ant VR. These mobile compatible VR headsets, based on Android and iOS are easy to use and inexpensive.
The main advantage with devices like these is the availability of content. There are many applications available for download on the Internet for free. The other good news is that along with variety of apps for VR, 360 degrees photos and videos are available with all kinds of educational or entertaining content for all the family to see.
If you have children over 12 years in the home, VR goggles like the Samsung Gear VR are a good fit. These are a great combination of comfortable design and enhanced immersive experiences. It is recommended to have minimal parental support to restrict the time of usage and content.
If you take a step further, Playstation VR has a lot to offer for teenagers. Including more mature gameplay and more possibilities of interaction, it would be worth the price.
Virtual Reality for Children – Benefits
Like with any other technology there are quite a few voices regarding the side effects VR may have on children (e.g. damage to sight). However, if you consider the benefits, they easily outweigh these harms and hence parental guidance is suggested at all times. These are a few outstanding benefits of virtual reality in children agreed by experts:
- Good choices for interactive games and movies .
- Facilitate greater interactivity and therefore fun to the fullest.
- Great potential for educational use . One of the best examples is the Google Expeditions app that allows teachers and parents to teach geography.
- Variety of content and free updates from the Internet.
Possible Drawbacks with VR
However, there are definitely some negative impacts of VR particularly in very young children. One risk is children aged below 12 years can confuse reality with fantasy. Although this is even common in some adults, keeping a close tab of events while the child gets immersed in VR is important on the parents part.
Many experts claim that VR can affect sight. But there are no scientific studies supporting this claim. Considering that the glasses are so close to the eyes, people believe it can effect eye sight and hence shorter intervals are suggested.
Nausea and dizziness are some other drawbacks children may face using VR, but as it has happened with many other technologies, man will get used to it. So, selecting the ideal VR headset matters a lot to avoid this.