Normally here at VRFI, we’re always looking to tell you about the latest VR game or product that can help keep you get in a good sweat, but the status of your overall health extends far beyond your waistline. With this in mind, one new partnership that has come about this week could be even more groundbreaking for the realm of VR health than you could have originally ever thought.

Virtuleap, a VR technology company that focuses on brain training, has announced that it is partnering with the AI business 4th-IR in a move that could be hugely important  to many around the globe. In combination with Virtuleap’s VR tech and 4th-IR’s AI learning tools, the two companies have said they now may be able to recognize cognitive diseases such as Alzheimer’s at an earlier stage.

So just how does this work, you might be asking? Great question. Through the use of Virtuleap’s tech, 4th-IR is said to be able to better understand the brain by applying its” deep learning capabilities to Virtuleap’s big data repository of volumetric gameplay patterns and longitudinal player interactions.” Specific step-by-step details as to how the two partners are able to identify these diseases weren’t really given (I imagine it’s somewhat complicated to explain) but the two have said that it’s a collaboration that “represents a cornerstone in the way both companies address the needs of the market.”

In regards to Virtuleap specifically, the company has already been focusing on applying virtual reality tech to improve brain activity for quite some time. A few months back, the Enhance VR brain training application left its beta form and became more widely available. The app, which is presently available on Oculus Rift, Quest, HTC Vive, and Valve Index, allows users to perform tasks that can improve memory, attention spans, and other various cognitive functions.

“The 4th-IR – Virtuleap partnership combines artificial intelligence with a unique and powerful data set gathered by Virtuleap’s innovative gaming concept,” said Thomas Gustinis, the CEO of 4th-IR of the move. “Our in-depth knowledge of AI and machine learning algorithms will facilitate robust and reliable cognitive assessment results.”

“The next decade will be defined by what emerges from the intersection of the sciences with frontier tech, and nowhere is this more pronounced than in the untapped potential lying dormant within the depths of volumetric gameplay patterns,” Virtuleap CEO Amir Bozorgzadeh explained in an accompanying quote alongside the collaboration announcement. “Our partnership with 4th-IR will enable us to mine the literally hundreds of thousands of data points that we capture in minutes of VR gameplay in order to reveal unprecedented insights into the human condition.”

My own takeaway from this new partnership, in a general sense, is that the VR space just continues to be truly amazing. As I said before, while it is cool that VR apps and games can help us stay physically active on a daily basis, it is incredible what companies like Virtuleap have been able to do with the tech in this field. The fact that that partnerships like this one between Virtuleap and 4th-IR could very well help save lives, or at the very least, extend them, is incredible. For things like this to be popping up in the VR realm given that the technology is still so young in the grand scheme of things gives me hope for what’s to come in the future, too.

For more information on Virtuleap as a whole, you can head over to their official website to learn more.


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