VR misses its moment
Virtual reality has become overshadowed by its augmented reality cousin. VR got used to grabbing the headlines – especially once Facebook splashed out $3bn for specialist start-up Oculus back in 2014 – but VR just hasn’t made the progress many expected of it.
Of course, consumers gawked at those odd VR headsets from the likes of Oculus, Sony and Samsung, but not many felt like actually the kit on. Or, more importantly, felt like splurging on them.
The problem? Primarily, the content that would show off VR at its best hasn’t been there. Also, it’s a costly business. Plus, the technology continues to be plagued by those nausea issues.
AR doesn’t carry any of that baggage. It’s an adjunct and an enhancement to the devices consumers already own and use en masse. And where Oculus failed to set a fire under VR, Pokémon Go did much to enthuse audiences for AR.
The latest estimates from eMarketer show the state of VR/AR play. At end-2018, there will be 51.2m AR users in the US, and just 36.7m VR users.
“VR isn't necessarily a core experience in our daily lives, but AR has the potential to become core to everything we're doing,” says Keith Soljacich, vp of experiential technology at Digitas tells eMarketer.