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An Uncertain Future: Where Next For The VR industry?

An Uncertain Future: Where Next For The VR industry?

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Virtual Reality, or VR, has transcended its image in the last ten years, graduating from something purely futuristic to something almost reasonably priced. When it comes to entertainment and interacting with media in general, VR and AR, to a similar extent, are still burgeoning in popularity despite being more or less available anywhere across the Western world. And while it continues to improve in viability and quality of immersion, the industry is still miles behind more traditional forms of media consumption.

Is it purely a question of experience quality, or are people simply not interested in the concept as much as we all thought we would be?

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All Access

The next frontier for VR lies in making this technology more accessible in general. As the market becomes more competitive, the cost of VR headsets is expected to decrease, making them more widely available to consumers; as stated, it’s also a question of choice and brand trust. Popular tech with specific uses is something of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The more people are convinced, the more the technology’s ability to evolve increases, and the more the competition between developers heats up. These situations are always better for consumers in the end. In the same way, Android phones compete with the iPhone and add features at a rapid pace to stand out.

Innovations like standalone VR headsets and augmented reality (AR) sets are paving the way for more versatile and user-friendly experiences, eliminating the need for extensive physical space. This means entertainment industries can expand to online offerings. This is already happening in spaces like bingo online, where live bingo is a staple of online play for customers.

VR presentations of football matches, live casinos, and historic city tours are a few examples of where VR and AR seem to be finding a real footing in the market. The ability to surpass the limitations previously needed by the tech while simultaneously finding new applications for it are potential ways VR can become more accepted and commonplace.

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Source: Unsplash

Financial Troubles

The full potential of VR in this space is yet to be fully realized based on the industry share it maintains. Ultimately, one of the primary barriers hindering widespread adoption is the cost associated with VR headsets. On average, a customer might pay anywhere from £100- £200 for a lower-cost headset, right up to the thousands for the high-end equipment.

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Naturally, pricing is defined by demand to some extent and advances in manufacturing. Today, the barrier of having to spend the same as a cheap laptop or designer label for a headset means the experience has to match or at least compete. Currently, with developers still cautious about whether VR is worth the investment, the costs remain stubbornly high.

Partnering up

The integration of VR with other technologies is another avenue for its future development. The interlinking between VR and artificial intelligence promises to create more intelligent and responsive virtual environments in general. AI algorithms can adapt VR experiences based on user behavior, making each encounter more personalized and engaging – again with optimization the more they are engaged with.

A few key areas where VR is making significant strides include education, business collaboration, and social interaction. The ability to create lifelike simulations and virtual environments enhances the learning and conversational experience online, making complex subjects more accessible. As the technology becomes more refined, can we expect VR to become an integral part of remote work, education, and long-distance relationship-building?

Despite all the rosy progress and potential, challenges remain. The requirement for high-quality internet connections to support VR experiences is a hurdle that needs to be addressed before it can truly take off. We can hope that, as global internet infrastructure improves, we’ll see more seamless VR experiences, finally opening the door to a wider range of applications and realization of its growth potential.