Google's Daydream Labs tested to see if virtual reality training works better than having employees watch videos about how to perform a task

Google’s Daydream Labs, a department dedicated to virtual reality, wants to make starting a job easier and more engaging by having new hires go through VR training. To test the technology’s effectiveness, the team pitted two groups against each other and had them acquire a new skill by different methods.

The goal was simple: learn to brew coffee using an espresso machine. One of the groups would only watch YouTube videos about how to do it while the other went through virtual reality training. The group who went through the virtual training did make fewer mistakes and brewed their coffee faster; however, they still faced drawbacks. VR viewers did not understand certain aspects of how the machine worked, such as how to properly tamp down the coffee grounds into the espresso scoop or that they should be prepared to pull their hands away before the machine released hot steam.

Daydream Labs detailed the process as a success in its blog post, but this was only one test. They plan to do others in the future and make the VR training more like a video game in which trainees have to follow a specific list of steps.

Google Daydream Labs VR Training


Lead Image: Maurizio Pesce | CC | Image altered

Google’s Daydream Labs, a department dedicated to virtual reality, wants to make starting a job easier and more engaging by having new hires go through VR training. To test the technology’s effectiveness, the team pitted two groups against each other and had them acquire a new skill by different methods.

The goal was simple: learn to brew coffee using an espresso machine. One of the groups would only watch YouTube videos about how to do it while the other went through virtual reality training. The group who went through the virtual training did make fewer mistakes and brewed their coffee faster; however, they still faced drawbacks. VR viewers did not understand certain aspects of how the machine worked, such as how to properly tamp down the coffee grounds into the espresso scoop or that they should be prepared to pull their hands away before the machine released hot steam.