Two Hearts Pizzeria: Dining via immersive 3D hologram tech brings people together

[Virgin Media and Musion conducted an interesting experiment to demonstrate how presence-evoking technology can bring people together. This short story from AV Magazine provides the basics of what was done and the original version includes a 2:42 minute video (also available via YouTube) with more details. SWNS Digital reports on the experiences of two pairs of participants and includes videos for each (also available via YouTube here and here). Commentary from a “futurologist and tech forecaster” from coverage in E&T follows below. –Matthew]

‘World-first hologram dining’ reunites loved ones

Technology company Musion 3D brought together loved ones located 400 miles apart in London and Edinburgh for a Virgin Media broadband promotion.

By Guy Campos
May 26, 2021

The world’s first hologram dining experience has been created in a publicity campaign for telecoms and media company Virgin Media.

The Two Hearts Pizzeria was an immersive 3D experience that enabled diners in London and Edinburgh, 400 miles away from each other, to enjoy a meal together as if they were sitting at the same table.

Over two days, on 15 and 16 April, more than 30 participants were able to face each other and make eye contact, lifesized, in 3D and 4K quality, as if they were actually opposite each other.

The sittings were offered to pre-booked diners in a Covid-safe space, reuniting separated loved ones even though social distancing regulations still prevented friends and families in Soctland and England from being able to meet in person.

The event was designed by creative engagement agency Audience and PR company Tin Man Comms to highlight a “Faster Brings Us Closer” message, showing the ability of Virgin Media to create “unlimiting timeless human connections in a fast-changing world”.

Musion 3D, which was responsible for the technology, is showcasing its holographic portfolio, along with live interactive telepresence and a streaming solution, at a post-lockdown relaunch at 8 Northumberland Avenue in London from 26-28 May and from 31 May to 3 June. Demos are also available at the viewer’s convenience via Teams or Zoom.

For more information:


[From E&T]

Holographic dining experience allows the Zoom-fatigued to connect remotely

By E&T editorial staff
April 16, 2021

[snip]

Futurologist and tech forecaster, Dr James Bellini, has predicted that hologram technology will become commonplace in homes by 2030.

“Advancements in technology and lightning-speed broadband mean that pioneering forms of connectivity, such as holograms, are now viable options for when we want to feel closer to those we’re not physically able to be with,” he said.

“With technology moving as quickly as it is now, it wouldn’t be strange for holograms to be commonplace in UK households by the turn of the decade.”

“Holograms can enhance our lives by removing barriers to human connection, be that screens or distance. A more frequent use of the tech could revolutionise the workplace, our social lives and events, travel and leisure or dining experiences.

“Having a 3D life-size, real-time connection with someone via hologram opens up a world of possibility and acts as a great starting point for those looking to re-adjust to normal life as restrictions ease, whilst relieving the longing of wanting to ‘be’ with another person.”

Speaking to the PA news agency, Gareth Lister, Virgin Media’s director of connectivity, said the network infrastructure is ready for such uses, as the gigabit rollout continues.

“The capability is there from a connectivity perspective, it’s going to be the products that sit on the end of it, and then the price of them, that will be what ultimately drives take-up, but a situation like Covid will accelerate it,” he said.

Since the start of the pandemic, many businesses have taken to new ways of working, with holographic and mixed-reality technologies in particular gaining interest.

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