TalkTech 2017 promoted Virtual Reality (VR) and digital culture, as students created VR experiences using CoSpaces, a VR editing tool. Teams visited the same type of establishment in their countries (a coffee shop, library, public art installation, mobile phone store, museum, local landmark, sporting venue, etc), created 360-degree images, and annotated them with avatars and digital content. The deliverable was a demonstration video using Flipgrid, a video sharing platform, showing the results of researching an industry and its use of VR. Teams exchanged their VR artefacts and discussed cultural similarities and differences. Some groups used Google Cardboard viewers to experience their VR content. Figure 5 shows students’ visits to Starbucks coffee shops in Romania and in the United States.
Fig. 5. Starbucks Coffee Shop (a) in Romania, (b) in Google Cardboard, and (c) in the United States, created in CoSpaces VR
Students learned that business applications of VR will change how companies present and sell products and how customers will experience them, across several industries.