Imagine the scene: It’s Valentine’s Day 2032. You’re sipping cocktails on the beach with your beau. The sun is setting while you laugh and dance the night away. You’re lost in the moment in your happy place. Metaphorically of course.
You’re actually sat on your living room sofa while your other half is on the other side of the world because they had to attend a conference they just couldn’t get out of.
But thanks to the power of technology you’re able to celebrate the day of love together despite being in different time zones. You both slip into something more comfortable, your sexy VR headset, and log in to your valentine’s experience. How romantic.
Valentine’s Day is well embedded in today’s world. Although its origins are unclear, there are records of a festival of love in February dating back to Roman times. We’ve gone from heartfelt love sonnets and hand-written letters to warming Facebook posts - love letters for the digital age.
Valentine’s Day has evolved year on year as technology increasingly enters our daily lives. Some may argue that technology takes the true out of true love as more and more people are choosing to find love online and find intimacy in new ways as they use streaming and on-demand services. But in my opinion, there’s nothing wrong with using technology to help our love reach further when we need to be connected to the ones we love.
Let’s take a look at the way Valentine’s Day could be celebrated in the future thanks to emerging technologies we are growing to love.
A recent report by Juniper Research predicts that the rise of smart clothing will surpass the growth of conventional activity trackers by 2022. With smart clothing, sensors and actuators are knitted into the fabric to make it feel like a normal piece of clothing.
A romantic valentine’s gift of lingerie could completely transform with colour changing or light emitting features becoming more popular. Built in life-sign monitoring would enable lingerie to change colour to show the wearer’s mood and even record and playback sensations.
And it’s not only clothing that is getting a technical revamp, even items as small as jewellery pieces have a significant electronic capability. Some as small as an earring could act as a sensor or feedback device. Body language will never be the same again!
From sending virtual love messages to having a virtual person bring you virtual flowers, Augmented Reality can be leveraged in many ways to let that someone special know you love them, even when they’re miles away.
One company already embracing this kind of tech inspired romance is Burberry. In 2013, they partnered with Google to create a campaign that consisted of sending digital postcards that could be literally sealed with a kiss from the sender.
Users could either: blow a kiss through their computer webcam and be captured using a combination of visual recognition technologies. Or, they could press their lips against the screen of their smartphone or tablet, and their kisses would be captured through touch-sensing systems.
When someone sent a kiss-sealed postcard, they could watch it travel across the globe to its destination by using AR and Google Maps. When it reached its recipient, the sender could watch a real-time map of the world with all other notes flying around the sky.
Add the sense of touch from your smart clothing and you’ve got yourself a hot date.
VR could make a Valentine’s date extra-special, with immersive experiences, anything is possible. From a serenading musician, to a romantic sunset on the beach, to moonlight dancing. And the best part? You can experience it all from the comfort of your own home.
Virtual Reality is shrinking the world, sitting together or across continents, VR will enable two people to experience a shared fantasy and ‘go’ places you’ve never thought you could go before
And who knows, by the time Valentine’s Day 2050 comes around with advanced AI, robots could become our valentines of the future!
If you want to learn more about VR and the opportunities it’s opening up, have a read of our recent blog about how VR is helping to treat people with mental health issues.
Posted by Kate Auchterlonie