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November 2015 Retro Gaming Article


November 14, 2015 Retro Gaming Blog Post:

Will interest in Virtual Reality stretch beyond a mall kiosk this holiday season?

A few days ago a Virtual Reality kiosk popped up at my local mall. Among venders of e-cigs, sports memorabilia, plush toys, and mysterious beauty creams; VR Pro has a kiosk in the center corridor. Surrounded by the likes of Talbots, Kay Jewelers, and Eddie Bauer, this kiosk was as dormant as the others in the cluster.

I've read numerous articles proclaiming 2016 would be the holiday season when consumers would embrace Virtual Reality. "VR will be here to stay," they decried. I see articles about Sony's Project Morpheus, Oculus Rift and a variety of smartphone solutions, but Best Buy (in the same mall) has only a few Google Cardboard styled solutions. Nowhere near the PS4 or Xbox One demo consoles do I see an HMD (Head Mounted Display) equivalent. Perhaps it's tucked away behind their vast array of refrigerators and laundry centers.

VR Pro kiosk at a shopping mall VR certainly has the potential to become a huge market segment. We've written several articles as to why we feel it's still not consumer-ready. Among it's detriments- the technology is proprietary with no common standards, it's expensive, and it hasn't done something remarkable enough to garner consumer interest or spending.

Why is this technology constantly being pushed? It seems as though it's been "on the cusp of acceptance" for decades. Let's assume it will catch on when consumers demand it. When the mass-market consumers feel they need it - that's when VR will "catch on". Until then, lets begin to think of the scenarios that can be improved via an HMD strapped to our faces.

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