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The project has ended in February 2023. A new platform is coming soon.

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Main contact

Dr Selvakumar Ramachandran

Organisation: Kerckhoffs Ltd

Organisation Type: SME

Country: United Kingdom

Field(s) of expertise / NGI Topic:

  • Wireless And Wired Networks (E.G. 5G)
  • AI
  • Virtual Reality Based Tourism

NGI focus areas for experiments:

  • Experimental Platforms (e.g. Smart cities, smart transport, Smart agriculture, etc.)
  • Smart Tourism using VR-based technologies

Your NGI-related portfolio: Kerckhoffs Ltd is a UK based company and currently developing Eyemmersive®. The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) foresees a decline of international tourism of 60% to 80% compared to last year, amounting to losses of between EUR 840 billion to EUR 1.100 billion in export revenues worldwide, and the World Travel and Tourism Council has warned the pandemic could lead to a loss of 50 million jobs worldwide in the travel and tourism industry. Some of those most affected by this will be small tourism operators and tourist guides. Under lockdown conditions, tourism destinations and businesses across the world have intensified their efforts to place themselves on the screens of millions of customers, showing the delights of their scenery, attractions and tourism activities that may encourage visitors to their cities and regions, once the crisis subsides. Restricted to our homes, new technologies can allow us to enjoy ‘virtual reality based tourism’ as a way of substituting real trips – for a while – and to dream or plan for the next vacation. Virtual reality-based technologies, using 360-degree videos of tourism destinations, viewed on a VR headset, offer the sense of ‘being there’, which undoubtedly stimulates the urge to travel and enjoy new experiences. Moreover, the immersive experience of places enables viewers to gain the confidence to travel by letting them explore and interact with the projected surroundings. We propose that virtual reality-based tourism can provide an alternative or, more likely, an additional revenue stream for tourist guides, working in collaboration with tourism operators, destination managers and tourist boards. This would create a parallel revenue stream not only during this period of tourism decline but also in the long run as an enabler of, and alternative to, traditional tourism. Eyemmersive® is a VR tourism product forming a digital marketplace to enable VR-based tourism. This addresses a market gap with VR applications in ‘bespoke travel immersive experience’ for consumers who cannot travel as conventional tourists and as a preview for those who can. Eyemmersive® digital marketplace connects 360-content providers to VR-based tourism experience consumers. It uses high definition 360-degree streaming and will play an important role in the future of the tourism industry, empowering interactive, bespoke, on-demand immersive travel experiences. The International roll-out of 5G networks will enable the delivery of live content using the Eyemmersive® platform. The product was inspired by the founder Dr Ramachandran’s personal experience and targets the disability and aging tourists who have limited ability to travel. However, the platform has a wider universal application in previewing destinations and advertising locations and venues to all consumers and to enable educational visits. In addition, there is the potential to reduce the carbon footprint of user, a positive environmental impact, by providing the travel/location experience without the need for extensive air or sea travel. Eyemmersive® also creates an alternative revenue opportunity through immersive tourism for corporate tourism operators but, also, it can be used by Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) as a promotional opportunity for traditional direct tourism.

The 30-months project will push the Next Generation Internet a step further by providing cascade funding to EU-based researchers and innovators in carrying out Next Generation Internet related experiments in collaboration with US research teams.

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