In Jerusalem’s Old City, the Tower of David Museum has launched a range of augmented and virtual reality products from local start-up companies.
The museum located in a 2,000-year-old citadel constructed by King Herod, aims to provide an exciting mix of archaeology combined with hi-tech gaming.
Many of the cutting-edge tech products can be tried for free on the site. Curators from around the world including Germany and Japan took a tour of the innovation lab on Tuesday (23 October).
“At the launch, visitors were able to explore the museum with AR (alternate reality) and VR (virtual reality) headsets, including with Microsoft’s HoloLens, which enables one to interact with Star Wars-style holograms – when a laser projects a 3-D image,” Devora Mason, head of the Tower of David Museum’s innovations lab told the Jerusalem Post.
She added that 85% of people in the city haven’t had the opportunity to use an AR device or other latest tech products. Visitors to the site can now try out Woojer’s haptic vest, which allows the wearer to feel vibrating sound waves.
Mason believes that the museum is becoming a crucial part of the AR/VR market that will provide enhanced entertainment for tourists.
In August, venture capitalists, investors and municipal officials gathered at the Tower of David Museum to discuss opportunities.
Opportunities for start-up companies include being invited into the programme set up by the innovation lab and will be paired with a mentor. In future, this could lead to start-ups working with digital entertainment and education products as well as collaborating with world heritage sites.
Investment for the Tower of David Museum
The innovation lab is funded by the Jerusalem Development Authority and a corporate partners. The joint investment is around ($700,000) for development and refurbishment of the department.
It is Israel’s only innovation space in Israel that has a large international visitor base for testing and pioneers development of cultural, educational and tourism experiences using hi-tech products.
The Tower of David Museum has stunning, panoramic views of Jerusalem. Located near the Jaffa Gate, this is the historical entrance to the city and the point where the East meets the West.
Ze’ev Elkin, Minister of Jerusalem and Heritage said: “The Tower of David Innovation Lab reflects the uniqueness of Jerusalem at its best – a combination of the city’s ancient history together with a renaissance of innovation and creativity.
“We see this as a great opportunity to show the expertise that the Tower of David Museum has in all the various aspects of visitor experience in museums, tourist sites and those of national heritage and create innovative ways to enhance it.”