Different types of virtual reality have been around for years, but there’s been a recent push, which began just a few years ago. At first, it was laughed at. Google Glass, the eyewear that acted as a computer and could project images right in front of you, was almost wholly rejected by techies, and there are countless other gadgets with a similar story.
But recently, things have changed. More people are excited about the approach of Oculus Rift, and programs like Pokemon Go show everyday users that virtual reality may have a prominent place someday. All in all, VR has not only become an accepted part of our culture, it’s expected to be everywhere in the future.
“The future of virtual reality (VR) is already here,” says an article from CouponBox.
“A quick Google News search will show you as much. With the introduction of the Samsung Gear VR in 2015 and this year’s unveiling of Facebook’s new 22,000-square-foot Area 404 hardware lab, VR is slowly but surely becoming a part of our everyday life.”
As this quote suggests, the debate over whether or not VR will stick around isn’t questionable. Instead, we’re looking at what the future of VR looks like. Though it’s difficult to tell, here are some things that are almost certain regarding the future of virtual reality.
Pokemon Go is a good example of where this is heading, but it’s actually considered augmented reality (AR), which is one step below virtual reality. Part of what made it so popular was the adventure. You were required to physically move in order to explore and gain points. This is one aspect that will translate into the full virtual reality experience.
People have fulfilled their visual senses. Though this is a very important aspect of any form of entertainment, it’s not the only thing people want to see with VR. The ability to move, hear, and even smell is essential for a great virtual reality experience.
For example, many VR headsets let you move side to side in order to control the direction of a virtual game, but that’s the extent of your movement. If you’re playing football, you don’t get to throw the actual football. This is something that will be a bigger part of future VR models.
This has already appeared in the fashion and cosmetics sector. Retailers are using smart mirrors in their physical stores to project clothing and cosmetics on customers. Online shoppers can try on the same things using an app or website. This concept hasn’t been adopted in every retail store, but it’s growing in popularity.
This is one trend that’s expected to grow rapidly. People love the convenience of online shopping, but it’s difficult for them to get exactly what they want through an online store. With virtual reality capabilities, consumers can obtain a more humanized experience with customization tailored to each visitor.
Most people have a small computer in their pocket (their smartphone) and a larger one that fits in a bag or a backpack. With ready access to the internet through apps and websites, it’s only a matter of time before VR begins to permeate this aspect of life as well.
This style of VR probably won’t take the form of a headset – though headsets will be present in some tech-loving households. It will be manifest through simple things like smartphone apps, televisions, and even commercial signage. It will take on applications that are both practical and entertaining, offering new games and apps to make life easier and more enjoyable.
The commerce sector is likely the place VR will have the biggest impact, influencing purchasing and lifestyle decisions. Secondly, VR will take over the entertainment industry.
Video games will become more real and even more addicting. For those who don’t play, there’s talk of bringing VR into movies and television productions. There will also be increased applications on smartphones that will invite both augmented and virtual reality into daily life.
The novelty will cause continual progression in the VR industry, according to Andrew Schoen of New Enterprises Associates.
He told BBC.com, “In a way, where we are today looks a little bit more like the early development of the film industry, where the novelty of watching a train heading straight towards the audience was enough to make an audience say, ‘Oh wow!’ and jump out of their seats.”
That novelty will grow into something bigger that can’t be stopped. VR is growing and the surge is promising a unique future with many possibilities. The current hype around VR is just beginning. Right now, people are excited about new possibilities and the hurdles that have been jumped to get to where we are today.
Progress has come leaps and bounds since it was first introduced. In that time, VR has become more user-friendly and begun integrating itself into everyday life. VR will become more stabilized, and the odds of it disappearing are minimal as it becomes a normalized part of society.