Want to talk to your friends and family through virtual reality? Then go to Kokomo.
But not the city.
Last week, Canon U.S.A., the international camera company, announced it is developing a new immersive virtual reality experience designed to “change human communication,” according to a release.
They’re calling the new platform Kokomo.
The company said the software is being designed to provide users with a way to meet friends and family virtually “in-person” by using a compatible Canon camera, a VR headset and a compatible smart phone.
“Kokomo will allow users to see and hear one another in real time with their live appearance and expression, in a photo-real environment, while experiencing a premium virtual reality setting in captivating locations like Malibu, New York or Hawaii,” Canon said in a release announcing the platform.
The app uses Canon cameras and imaging technology to create realistic representations of users, so calls feel like you are interacting face-to-face, rather than through a screen or an avatar, the company said.
“Every ImmersiveCall should be a memorable experience,” said Kazuto “Kevin” Ogawa, president and CEO of Canon U.S.A. Inc., in a release. “Kokomo will enable people to create memorable, meaningful connections.”
So why name the new platform Kokomo? The company said it was inspired by two meanings of the word.
“It’s a mythological place that fits the image of wherever you want it to be and the second part is if you look at the translation, it fits the Japanese translation of ‘right beside you, here,’” the company said in an email. “The inspiration is that it’s someone beside you but also a place you want to be.”
This story has been updated with information from the company on why they named the platform Kokomo.