Dutch startup Sensiks has an answer to job stress and fatigue in the workplace, in the form of a sensory reality pod (SRP) that stimulates multiple senses to immerse its users in relaxing virtual environments. The company also mentions the ability to “recall memories from the past” using its multisensory simulations.
Workers sit inside the pod, donning a VR headset that presents them with 360-degree video while corresponding scent cartridges release smells like burning wood and freshly-cut lawn. Other sensory manipulations involve changes in temperature, air flow, and light frequencies. Visuals may take a person to the beach, on a walk with elephants, or on a drone flight over the mountains.
With repeated use, Sensiks’ software learns about its individual users and the experiences that soothe them best. The pod measures stress levels using indicators like heart rate, skin conductance, and respiration. For this to work, the person inside the pod must wear a biometric headband, an ear clip, and a handheld device. Sensiks claims that processing this information allows the pods to eventually “give relevant content suggestions” based on the data and current detected mood of the individual.
Sensik is one of several nominees for Axa Health Tech & You Awards’ Mental Health in the Workplace Challenge for its potential to reduce worker stress and burnout. According to Sensiks, other applications of sensory reality include the travel and hospitaliy industries—such as in hotels and airports—mental care—such as treating people with neurological disorders—and home entertainment.