Published: 28th April 2021
How NextMeet bridges the gap between virtual meetings and the real world
NextMeet, the virtual reality-based platform, allows users to create 3D avatars of themselves and interact with their peers in real-time during conferences and other online gatherings
The work began exactly one lockdown ago. Pushpak Kypuram, who has over 20 years of experience in the virtual reality world, felt the need to provide a steadier platform for students who had suddenly been misplaced from their classrooms and thrust into the virtual world. And so NextMeet came into the picture, an immersive platform that enables real-time virtual conferencing and networking through an avatar-based 3D environment.
“I saw that remote working was here to stay,” says Pushpak, “When you look into it, all other platforms, like Zoom and Google Meet, are 2D. That’s why I introduced the first 3D platform which allows real-time interaction. On a VR platform, users have the opportunity to ‘be present’ virtually, in addition to collaborating and communicating with others in real-time. The potential this has across industries is already apparent.”
LAUNCH PAD: The platform was launched in October, 2020
Introduced in October 2020, NextMeet offers immersive environments that can suit the specific requirement that an individual user or institution may have. In their latest Version 3, they included four virtual zones — virtual classrooms for educational institutions, virtual meetings for businesses, virtual conferences and virtual expos for commercial and academic reasons alike. And the details will compensate for everything you miss about your university or office with features like a networking lounge, help desk, presentation screens in the conference hall and walkable 3D avatars of yourself and your peers.
Pushpak illustrates the idea behind the platform, “In a hybrid model like this, when you can virtually walk and explore everything, it is closest to the feeling of attending a real meeting. It eliminates the fatigue and anxiety that a lot of people face when it comes to virtual events. With this, you’re not saying ‘Not another virtual meeting’, you may actually have a chance to participate and interact with the people involved, in real-time.”
TALK POINT: NextMeet allows you to interact in real time
A month into their launch, NextMeet partnered with Michigan State University in the US with great results. More recently, the platform has been tested by Amity University and Reputation Today magazine, in addition to various individuals. Schools have hosted summer camps and storytelling sessions in the VR model where students can solve quizzes and complete tests where they are physically present with their teachers and friends.
If you enrol your employees or students onto the platform, NextMeet does the rest by registering them and emailing the usernames and passwords to each participant. The platform comes in a 200 MB downloadable form that can be installed on both Windows and MacBooks. Soon, they are hoping to launch the Android version of the same for mobile users.