Is VR the future?
Last year at NAB was the first time I got to experience true VR. It was in the DELL booth with not just full visuals and sound, but a moving chair as well. At the time I thought that this would be the future of not only gaming, but of documentary and some dramatic storytelling.
As we close in on a year since NAB 2016, it’s been interesting to see how slow the adoption rate has been for VR. Last fall data from Steam showed that just 0.28% of Steam users having a VR headset, and the growth rate was around 0.04%
Part of that is due to the cost of VR units, but it could also be in part to 3D. A few years ago when 3D was all the rage, the early adopters were told it was the future, and many spent a lot of money for the latest tech. With 3D content hard to come by and most TV manufacturers not even including it on most of their sets, perhaps there is a bit of buyer fatigue setting in. That people want to know that it will be around for a while, before taking the plunge.
HTC has started trying to appeal to professionals. Their MakeVR allows professionals to create models in VR, and then export them to CAD or a 3D printer. Having a virtual workshop will be pretty amazing for a lot of designers.
Will NAB 2017 focus on VR for consumers or professionals? We will find out in a month!