Immersive audio is our everyday experience of being able to hear and interact with sounds around us. Simulating spatially located sounds in virtual or augmented reality (VR/AR) must be done in a unique way for each individual and currently requires expensive and time-consuming individual measurements, making it commercially unfeasible. Furthermore, the impact of immersive audio beyond perceptual metrics such as presence and localisation is still an unexplored area of research, specifically when related with social interaction, entering the behavioural and cognitive realms.
SONICOM will revolutionise the way we interact socially within AR/VR environments and applications by leveraging methods from Artificial Intelligence (AI) to design a new generation of immersive audio technologies and techniques, specifically looking at personalisation and customisation of the audio rendering. Using a data-driven approach, it will explore, map and model how the physical characteristics of spatialised auditory stimuli can influence observable behavioural, physiological, kinematic, and psychophysical reactions of listeners within social interaction scenarios.
The developed techniques and models will be evaluated in an ecologically valid manner, exploiting AR/VR simulations as well as real-life scenarios, and developing appropriate hardware and software proofs-of-concept. Finally, in order to reinforce the idea of reproducible research and promoting future development and innovation in the area of auditory-based social interaction, the SONICOM Ecosystem will be created, which will include auditory data closely linked with model implementations and immersive audio rendering components.
The SONICOM consortium includes researchers and AR/VR experts from seven research/academic institutions:
- Imperial College London (UK)
- Sorbonne University (France)
- Austrian Academy of Sciences (Austria)
- University of Milan (Italy)
- National & Kapodistrian University of Athens (Greece)
- University of Malaga (Spain)
- University of Glasgow (UK)
and three small-medium enterprises:
- Dreamwaves (Austria)
- Reactify (UK)
- USound (Austria)
research institutions, and creative tech companies
year project funded under the Horizon2020 FET Proactive – Boosting emerging technologies (H2020-FETPROACT-2018-2020)
The SONICOM project has yet to commence, but if you have any pressing questions, email the team and we will see what we can do.