Hardware isn’t everything – in fact, all the shiny new technology doesn’t mean much when the content is not up to standard. It should be realistic as well as transferrable – meaning it has physical and psychological fidelity. As new technology becomes available, VirTra tries to keep up with it by finding the methods that provide the highest fidelity.
As detailed in a press release, VirTra has recently completed construction of a volumetric capture studio. We named this V3™ – after ‘VirTra Volumetric Video.” It is in a room that is 39 feet in diameter with 14 feet of capture space. This studio provides a controlled environment where capture can occur without worrying about conditions such as weather, lighting, background noise, or having to rent a space to film. Having less limits allows the VirTra content team to produce more content.
What makes volumetric video capture so unique is its ability to be used in either VR goggles or on flat screens. As of now, VirTra finds the current virtual reality training technology to be lacking. But one day when it is more suited to train officers and military, characters captured in the V3 studio can be transferred easily.
Volumetric video has been used in a variety of ways – ranging from entertainment to training. VirTra is the first law enforcement / military simulation company to utilize volumetric video for training first responders.
The V3 studio was an effort that took years to plan and months to build to perfection. The goal is to provide a more realistic take on 3D characters that can be utilized in various mediums. Typical CGI characters seen when using VR goggles show unrealistic humans that are unable to produce the same movements as real people. Volumetric video eliminates the “Uncanny Valley” effect by more accurately capturing realistic people as 3D characters.
To put it simply, VirTra will be capturing real people and inserting them into scenarios as 3D objects that can be used on both screen-based and VR platforms. It tackles the limitations of both HD video filming and CGI generation.
Not yet, at least. As of right now, there are some issues with VR not creating the transferability ideal for first responders. With issues such as motion sickness and problems using training firearms, we find that screen-based systems are still superior.
Despite the setbacks, we have seen virtual reality training make improvements. We believe it has potential to become a tool VirTra uses in the future. When exactly – we do not yet know.
CHANDLER, Ariz. — October 19, 2022 — VirTra, Inc. (NASDAQ: VTSI) (“VirTra”), a global provider of judgmental use of force training simulators, and firearms training simulators for the law enforcement and military markets, has introduced a breakthrough technology for the industry, “VirTra Volumetric Video”, or “V3™”, which has the potential to provide a step-function change in training content.
Prior to V3™, companies would use either high-definition video capture or computer-generated imagery (CGI) human avatars with each having its own advantages and limitations. High-definition video capture is photorealistic and looks real, but it is simply two-dimensional (2D) and limited to the one angle originally captured. CGI avatars are three-dimensional (3D) but do not look, move or emote like a human while demanding expensive manual work from talented artists. CGI avatars fail at de-escalation training and judgmental use-of-force exercises whereas V3 excels at depicting human interactions accurately.
V3™ combines the advantages of high-definition video and 3D characters coupled with the ability to affordably build a comprehensive library of training content suitable for screen-based or headset-based platforms to provide a novel, industry-first simulation training solution. The V3™ studio has a diameter of 39 feet and can record multiple people interacting with each other at the same time.
4DViews, the market leader of volumetric capture systems, previously presented to VirTra new volumetric video technology with unique capabilities that are ideal for police and military training. 4DViews’ technology enables VirTra to overcome the “uncanny valley” effect, resulting in a deeper sense of immersion and a better training experience. VirTra purchased a premium volumetric video capture studio with adjacent supercomputers to perform the trillions upon trillions of calculations needed to successfully implement this technology. VirTra also negotiated a multi-year exclusivity for the patented 4DViews volumetric video technology for the police and military training markets.
A team of contractors worked around the clock to custom build the V3™ studio. Special sound-proofing material is sandwiched between four layers of wall material. Professional acoustic engineers analyzed the space and strategically placed 76 acoustic tiles for maximum effect, combined with custom quadruple sound dampened air conditioning ducts makes for the cleanest audio profile possible for a volumetric video capture studio. The V3™ incorporates a full 360-degree, tier 1 green screen to quickly create training content with the lowest potential for any manual editing. Approximately 90% of all costs for V3™ had been paid through the end of the second quarter of 2022.
“Exceptional training content is a key differentiator and compelling reason for so many customers to buy simulators from VirTra,” said Bob Ferris, Chairman and Co-CEO of VirTra. “Our goal with this multi-year project was to propel simulation training content to new levels of effectiveness, whether on a screen or in a headset, and in the process, we have built the world’s very best volumetric video capture studio. This is a tool needed to create characters and scenarios with unparalleled realism built for the three-dimensional world of headset-based training.”
The industry-first V3™ studio is fully operational and is quickly creating the most realistic, flexible and future-proof training library for police and military forces worldwide. VirTra is also evaluating rental opportunities for the volumetric studio to select customers.
VirTra (NASDAQ: VTSI) is a global provider of judgmental use of force training simulators and firearms training simulators for the law enforcement, military educational and commercial markets. The company’s patented technologies, software, and scenarios provide intense training for de-escalation, judgmental use-of-force, marksmanship, and related training that mimics real-world situations. VirTra’s mission is to save and improve lives worldwide through practical and highly effective virtual reality and simulator technology. Learn more about the company at www.VirTra.com.
4DViews is the market leader in volumetric video capture systems, providing complete studio solutions for filming, performance and full-body holograms for use in AR, VR, and Web applications. Since its inception in 2007, 4DViews’ aim is to deliver high-quality and realistic volumetric video with its volumetric capture system, the HOLOSYS. 4DViews’ volumetric video has been used extensively in the training, entertainment, fashion, and filmmaking industries all over the world to create impactful content. Learn more about 4Dviews’ volumetric video at www.4dviews.com.
The information in this discussion contains forward-looking statements and information within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which are subject to the “safe harbor” created by those sections. The words “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “intends,” “may,” “plans,” “projects,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “predicts,” “potential,” “continue,” “would” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements that we make. The forward-looking statements are applicable only as of the date on which they are made, and we do not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements in this document are made based on our current expectations, forecasts, estimates and assumptions, and involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause results or events to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. In evaluating these statements, you should specifically consider various factors, uncertainties and risks that could affect our future results or operations. These factors, uncertainties and risks may cause our actual results to differ materially from any forward-looking statement set forth in the reports we file with or furnish to the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”). You should carefully consider these risk and uncertainties described and other information contained in the reports we file with or furnish to the SEC before making any investment decision with respect to our securities. All forward-looking statements attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement.
Matt Glover and Jeff Grampp, CFA
Gateway Group, Inc.