News / 22.08.2018
The Shutters Are Not Coming Down On VR, They Are Just Coming Up!
– Sol Rogers
On 16th August, Sony announced that its PlayStation VR headset had reached three million systems sold. It also revealed it had sold 21.9 million PSVR games, including critically acclaimed titles such as Resident Evil 7 Biohazard and Job Simulator. Considering the recent claims that VR headset sales are in a tailspin, this was a much needed announcement for the industry.
So what about those claims? HTC VIVE neatly rebutted them on its blog, citing a lack of inventory behind the apparent decline of Vive sales: “VIVE has paced at its highest sales velocity of all time, for weeks on end, and we sold out. For a consumer electronic product in its third calendar year, this continued trajectory is nearly unheard of…as people begin to understand the possibilities for virtual applications, word of mouth will grow, and sales will continue their upward trajectory.”
It shouldn’t be forgotten that major advances in technology take time. Read this article on iPhone sales vs. VR devices. The figures show that in Year 1, both technologies had a similar number of units sold. Interesting…
While we are probably 18 months from a real watershed moment for VR, there is a lot of positive noise. For example, Sony’s current catalog of nearly 340 VR games and experiences is soon to be bolstered by new games including Creed: Rise to Glory from Survios, and sci-fi hero first-person shooter, Evasion, plus the much-anticipated Dreams from Media Molecule. And with Christmas fast approaching I’m sure we’ll have some solid new sales figures by the end of the year.
And then there’s Oculus Go, with its estimated 289,000 shipments in Q2 2018, which helped major headset sales grow by almost 40% compared to the first quarter. “Oculus Go is part of an important movement for [extended reality],” said SuperData Research’s head of XR Stephanie Llamas. “Facebook sold more units of the standalone headset in its launch quarter than they did the Oculus Rift in the entire first half of 2017. Its price and convenience are proving to be selling points, but it will be up to them to create compelling content that keeps users engaged over and over again.”
I’ve always said content is king, so it’s great that Viveport now supports Oculus Rift compatible titles. From 4th September, Oculus Rift owners will be able to take part in everything Viveport has to offer, including the Viveport subscription. This $9 per month service allows VR headset owners to download and play five VR titles a month. Viveport president Rikard Steiber told Engadget the app store has seen four times the amount of paying customers in the first half of 2018, compared to last year, thanks largely to Viveport’s subscription offering.
While some stats paint a picture that it’s all doom and gloom, there are plenty of alternative views and evidence that VR is ramping up. And while the consumer base grows, VR is taking off big time with businesses, especially training and location-based entertainment companies. Enterprise numbers don’t hit consumer forecasts so it’s hard to see the whole picture. At REWIND, we are certainly seeing an appetite for VR, and all types of immersive content creation. VR is just getting started.
Corporations such as Walmart, Renault Trucks, and BAE Systems are employing immersive technologies to drive efficiencies, and these companies are seeing a strong return on investment.
The original Oculus Development Kit (the DK1) got me into VR. We built our own room scale VR using a DK1, three XBOX 360 Kinects, three tracking laptops, one backpack laptop, and a Razer Hydra.
I first met former broadcaster, Sir Martyn Lewis, back in January. We met at an event I was hosting on marketing innovations in London.
Autism is what is known as a spectrum condition, meaning it affects individuals in different ways. Adults and children with autism have challenges in behavior, social skills, verbal and non-verbal communication, as well as sensory and attention issues that impact their lives.
At South by Southwest in 2018, Bose introduced its AR glasses to showcase what sound-based AR might look and feel like. Combining data from embedded motion sensors with GPS information from your phone, the glasses knew where you were and which direction you were looking and moving. Small speakers fed sound to the wearer’s ears.
Throughout time, humans have used visual-based methods to help them remember information – from early cave drawings to modern day video. VR is not only the next logical step but a step in the right direction: research suggests we retain more information and can better apply what we have learned after participating in virtual reality exercises.
Virtual reality can change what a person sees, how they think, what they feel and even how they behave. This is because users believe they are present in the virtual environment they find themselves in.
HP’s new virtual reality headset, ‘Reverb – Professional Edition’, launched yesterday, joining HP’s comprehensive commercial VR portfolio. The headset has a staggering 2160 x 2160 panel per eye and 114-degree field of view.
SWSW 2019 was a whirlwind of enlightening talks, networking, tech innovations, and Texas BBQ! While we are still on a SXSW high, we wanted to share the five things that stood out for us at this year’s event…