People across the world can now instantly walk through the prehistoric village of Skara Brae in Orkney, soar high over Edinburgh Castle like a bird, journey into the depths of The Hollow Mountain of Ben Cruachan and experience the Northern Lights all from the comfort of their own home with the release of a new virtual reality app from VisitScotland.
ScotlandVR is a virtual travel experience which is available for all Android and Apple users to download free on Google Play and Apple Store.
Featuring 360 degree imagery and footage, users start their journey in a virtual glen complete with a Highland Cow, crackling fire and bellowing stag. From there, they can jump into a map of Scotland and experience 26 unique attractions covering every region of the country.
The whole environment can be experienced in Stereoscopic 3D when used with a Google Cardboard virtual reality headset in 360 degree view using gyroscope phone technology or by touchscreen also in phone mode.
The Scotland VR app is a result of the collaborative effort and pioneering spirit of Scottish academic, technology and tourism sectors.
As part of the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design, VisitScotland challenged young talent from Scotland’s academia to create an exciting, interactive digital product designed to inspire and motivate people to visit Scotland.
The winners of the competition were a team from Edinburgh Napier University, led by Professor David Benyon and Dr Oli Miva,l who developed the concept for an innovative app in which to explore a virtual Scotland. The final ScotlandVR app was created by Edinburgh-based digital and creative agency, Whitespace, in association with VisitScotland and Edinburgh Napier University.
The app launches with 26 attractions, but future phases of the software will see attractions added through refreshed content. The landmark locations for launch were chosen from set criteria including footfall, product diversity, online searches, showcasing attractions with innovative architecture and design and links to the current 2017 Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology. The launch attractions are:
|Abbotsford House||Scottish Borders|
|Robert Burns Birthplace Museum||Ayrshire|
|Cairngorms National Park||Highlands|
|Calanais Standing Stones||Outer Hebrides|
|Cruachan The Hollow Mountain||Argyll and Bute|
|Edinburgh Castle||Edinburgh and Lothians|
|Eilean Donan Castle||Highlands|
|The Falkirk Wheel||Loch Lomond, The Trossachs, Stirling and Forth Valley|
|Falkland Palace and Garden||Fife|
|Forth Bridges||Fife / Edinburgh and Lothians|
|Galloway Forest Park||Dumfries and Galloway|
|The Kelpies||Loch Lomond, The Trossachs, Stirling and Forth Valley|
|Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum||Glasgow|
|National Museum of Scotland||Edinburgh and Lothians|
|New Lanark World Heritage Site||Lanarkshire|
|Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh||Edinburgh and Lothians|
|RRS Discovery||Dundee and Angus|
|The Scottish Crannog Centre and Loch Tay||Perthshire|
|The National Wallace Monument||Stirlingshire|
|Shetland Museum and Archives||Shetland|
Research shows that 60 per cent of searches for destination information come from mobile devices. This, coupled with virtual reality experiencing growth worldwide (forecasted numbers of VR users between now and 2018 set to grow by 400% per cent to 170 million) creates a prime opportunity for Scotland to be discovered in a new and innovative way.
A recent report by Greenlight VR showed that travel and adventure VR content is the most sought after by consumers (74 per cent), followed by movies and live-events.
NOTES: ScotlandVR is now available to download from Google Play and Apple Stores. For more information, visit www.visitscotland.com/app
Promotional videos of ScotlandVR:
30 sec edit – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7iWlo1YjWBE