VR Development: How to Optimize Your Processes
MAY 21, 2018 13:52 PM
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VR Development: How to Optimize Your Processes

by Josh Althuser
Creating amazing VR applications doesn’t depend on how big your team is or how deep your pockets are. VR and related technologies are getting cheaper to participate in and consumers are much more interested in AR, VR, and MR than ever before. 
Google, Sony, and Microsoft have made platforms, tools, and applications that have helped popularize the technology for both consumers and developers. Even with a limited budget and a small team size, you’re able to create your own VR applications. You’ll need to optimize your development processes in order to successfully plan, develop, and implement your VR, AR, or MR idea, though.
Developing VR, MR, and AR applications is an incredibly exciting prospect. Getting your project finished and deploying your VR product will take a great deal of wisdom and a bit of skill to pull off, however. Luckily, there’s a ton of wisdom out there to help you kickstart your VR dream.
First and foremost, you’ll want to understand how software development works. Agile software development methodologies are widely accepted as the best way to develop modern software. In Agile software development, development teams prioritize delivering working software over sticking to a plan. This means you and your team must be committed to rapid development cycles, responding to change, and having meaningful meetings with your team on a daily basis.
Face-to-face meetings help everyone on the team assess where the VR project is, how many use cases have been implemented, and what will be accomplished in the near future. These face-to-face meetings are structured around larger timeframes. These timeframes, often referred to as sprints, help determine overarching goals. Every day is one step closer to the sprint. These sprints are within the grander scale of the overall product design and software requirements. This setup allows you to break up a complex software project into small pieces, all which are flexible to change.
Agile software development principles have been applied to all sorts of software development contexts, and have been met with great success. Properly implementing Agile methodologies into your existing development processes will result in better communication among team members, more accurate planning and timelines, boosted productivity, greater transparency, faster development times, and a better chance at creating user-optimized design.
Frequent dialogue, whether it’s through meetings in a physical or digital space, is necessary no matter how you choose to implement Agile software development principles. Talking with your VR development team, and making sure they communicate with non-technical members of the team and business people within your organization is an absolute must.
In addition to adopting Agile software development practices, it is in your VR, AR, or MR team to begin researching success stories. Although we don’t have decades worth of data, there are some metrics you can begin to glean from other companies. Sephora, Ikea, and North Face have released their own AR application, for example, and it may be useful to you to see how established brands have utilized the technology to achieve their business goals. It can help you get ideas for your own application’s user interface design, zone in on your target market, and help give you some ideas of how to position your product once it’s ready for deployment.
Creating VR applications is an exciting frontier in software development. While it may be fraught with unseen perils, there are equal unseen delights. Take the time to research VR, AR, and MR development teams, development cycles, and product deployment. 
You’ll want to integrate Agile software development principles to help ensure that your VR project is done in an effective, efficient, and time-conscious fashion. In addition, you’ll want to start thinking of how you will market your product early on by studying famous forays into AR, VR, and MR by established and tiny brands alike. Keep researching, training, and learning all about VR and related technologies to optimize your processes to the best of your abilities. With a solid understanding of software development practices, VR marketing techniques, and how to direct your team, you’ll be able to create and release a successful VR application.
Josh Althauser is an entrepreneur with a background in design and M&A. He's also a developer, open source advocate, and designer. You may connect with him on Twitter.
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