Using Virtual Reality to Honor One’s Elders in Hong Kong

Virtual reality technology can be sued for a wide range of purposes. In a lot of cases, projects revolve around gaming. Over in Hong Kong, however, one entrepreneur sees VR as a tool to reverence one’s ancestors. It is a very unique approach to bridge the gap between innovative technology and ancient traditions. How this venture will be received by the general public, remains to be seen, though.

Honoring Your Ancestors With Virtual Reality

It is important to give this venture some context before going into the details. More specifically, there is a lack of space for cemeteries around Hong Kong. This is a big problem, as the country is home to an ancient tradition of revering one’s ancestors. Especially those adhering to Confucian traditions of filial obligation will run into major issues these days. Right now, storing the ashes of ancestors can cost over $100,000 relatively easy. That is a big problem for a lot of Hong Kong residents, but there is no viable solution in place just yet.

To solve this problem, one local entrepreneur plans to use VR technology. More specifically, users can create virtual headstones in an augmented reality landscape. This includes any location across Hong Kong, including public parks, for example. Not only does this reduce the costs significantly, it also allows residents to adhere to these ancient traditions in a new way.

Especially the younger generations will look for some sort of solution to offset high costs. Whether or not VR technology will be the go-to solution, remains to be seen.This new service is scheduled to open to the public at some point in 2018. An exact date has not been communicated, as the platform is still in development right now. So far, it seems around 300 users have already shown an interest in this service, which is rather impressive.  It is certainly an appealing service that provides a viable alternative to upholding ancient traditions.

Until the Hong Kong government comes up with a solution of their own, a “niche” service like this will always be successful. iVeneration is a company well worth keeping an eye on, as this business model may come to other countries in the future as well. The lack of land in Hong Kong is a severe problem right now, and coming up with viable solutions is not straightforward.

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