Working in the metaverse causes stress, headaches, and frustration

The first study on working in the metaverse has been completed. The researchers found no arguments in favor of office work in virtual reality and, on average, there was no particularly positive experience for study participants.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founding president and CEO, announced late last October that Meta will be the new name for the company that operates Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp social networking sites. The manager hoped that they would soon be seen as running a “metaverse” where the physical and digital worlds would meet and provide users with an “immersive virtual online experience.” The manager presented the possibilities of the metaversion in February. But the technology is not yet ready for widespread use in the workplace, and some will never be able to use it effectively.

There are many benefits to working in virtual reality, less actual literature visits and more freedom. At least that’s the theory. The New Scientist, however he pointed outthat during the first scientific practice test the concept failed. Researchers at the University of Coburg and the University of Cambdrige have published their work.

The results should be treated with some caution as peer review is still ongoing. 16 people – external participants and university staff – spent 35 hours a week in a traditional office. They then performed the same activities in a virtual reality environment for a week. The Oculus (Meta) Quest 2 is paired with a physical keyboard and a trackpad integrated with the Logitech K830.


The results were sobering. During the metaverse week, they performed “significantly worse” on most of the measured criteria. This was especially true for productivity and health criteria. Stakeholders felt the work was 19 percent more stressful and the workload 35 percent higher. There was a 42 percent increase in frustration at failing to get the job done efficiently or in a reasonable amount of time. Productivity, on the other hand, fell by 16 percent according to the subjects ’own estimates.

On a physical level, participants often complained of eye fatigue and fatigue, headaches, and nausea while working in virtual reality. Two participants had to drop out of the study as early as the first day of the metaverse week because they were particularly affected by these symptoms and felt extremely uncomfortable wearing the virtual reality headgear. Another person reported a three-hour persistent migraine after working 45 minutes in an intensive virtual environment.


Experts said they did not select the most expensive or most convenient virtual reality solutions for the experiment participants and did so on purpose, as many companies do not have the money to provide their office employees with high-end virtual reality systems. The latter are available from around € 2,000, of course this is per person. The scientists added that some of the test subjects had no previous experience with virtual reality, which may have contributed to their frustration. They saw signs that the unpleasant effects began to subside over time in some applicants.

Regardless of the results, expectations for the metaverse are high, even though the technological advancement of working in a virtual office is likely to require a few more years of development. Fortune magazine about it quoted an Accenture survey found that 71 percent of participants in the corporate leadership sector expected positive business effects from meta-competition. And 42 percent even hoped for a “transformation” or “breakthrough.”


Source: SG.hu Hírmagazin – IT/Tech by sg.hu.

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