Virtual Reality technology has seen a rise in demand and has numerous applications for older adults both in clinical and non-clinical settings. The acceptance of older adults towards using virtual reality however remains largely unexplored.
We believe that positive exposure to new technologies will lead to heightened interest for them and increased acceptance. Our aim is to use modern technology and the appeal of the arts to make senior citizens more open to using technology and feel more included and aware of recent developments. We would also like to create a positive and enjoyable event for the elderly during these trying times. Therefore, we decided to create a Virtual Reality Tour around Munich, which we will show to senior citizens in order to give them a fascinating new experience and broaden their horizons within the field of technology.
To be able to conduct research in the field of technology acceptance among the elderly, we first had to find a sufficient tool to measure our outcome. After some initial uncertainty about the research method, we have found the UnifiedTheory of Acceptance and Use of Technology by Venkatesh et al. 2012 (UTAUT2) (see figure below). This model serves as an appropriate theoretical framework for our project.
UTAUT2 states that there are certain interrelations between variables such as user experience or perceived ease of use (see figure below). After the evaluation of the data generated in our study, we will be able to provide knowledge about the correlation between the given factors and thereby provide research results about which factors affect technology acceptance in older adults the most.
Our Virtual Reality Tour around Munich consists of 360°-pictures of famous places in Munich, for example Marienplatz, Olympiapark and Hofgarten. Seeing a 360°-image creates a feeling of actually being in the place you see – that way, especially older adults who are not as agile as they used to be can go on a little adventure without leavingthe safety of their own home. Furthermore, people can also listen to some interesting facts about the places they see while doing our tour.
If you want to gain a small glimpse into our VR-tour, please watch the video below. It cannot compete with the experience of a real 360°-picture, but it should give you a feeling of how our tour looks like. If you are interested in seeing our complete tour or have someone in mind who might, please contact us at any time!
We are a research team from diverse scientific and ethnical backgrounds who are eager to explore the elderly’s attitude towards technology. We want to change their perceptions about technological issues and create enthusiasm in accordance with this year’s call “Technology & Arts”.
Julia Angerer (Industrial Biotechnology / M. Sc.)
Magdalena Bader (Brewing and Beverage Technology / M. Sc.)
Milan Cupac (Engineering Science / B. Sc.)
Aikaterini Mavroudi (Mechanical Engineering / B. Sc.)
Jan Luca Scheerer (Informatics / B. Sc.)
Mohamed Shoeir (Health Sciences / B. Sc.)
Sabrina Schwarzmeier (Teaching at Secondary Schools, Mathematics/Physiks / M. Ed.)
Yuki Nojiri (Physics / PhD)
Prof. Dr. Daniel Pittich – TUM, Assistant Professorship of Technical Education
Silke Schmidt – Head of XR Hub Munich)
Prof. Dr. Michaela Krützen (consultant) – HFF, Dept. I – Media Studies
Granny Vision GmbH
Granny Vision GmbH is a company specialized in providing VR solutions for senior citizens. Besides Virtual Yoga and classes about digital media, they also offer virtual museum tours, virtual strolls through the forest or visiting virtual opera performances. On top of that they also create individual VR content for customers, for example photos of family holiday trips. For more information please visit their website (https://www.granny-vision.com).
We found out about Granny Vision GmbH through our Supervisor Silke Schmidt. As soon as we contacted them, Carolina Bendlin and Daniel Bendlin were just as excited about our project as we are. They helped us create our virtual reality tour and also edited the video you find above, guided by our vision. All our work could not have been done without this extraordinary help.