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Todd Suomela

This VR cycle is dead | TechCrunch - 0 views

  • Occasional training tool and/or the future of high end entertainment — just possibly. But, hey, no one likes to feel sick at the movies. Feeling like you want to barf is only a good use of your time and energy if you’ve eaten something that might otherwise kill you.

    The wider question in the gaming space, which excels at entertainment and escapism, remains how big VR might get when the hardware isn’t so pricey and clunky, and when investing time and energy in building compelling content can start to look like less of a sinkhole prospect for developers who can now be seen pulling their horns in.

    These same types of content makers may well be having their heads turned by the potential of AR gaming. Which can, as noted above, already point to the existence of essential content generating wild excitement among millions of consumers.

    Rather like the solar eclipse, AR has been shown turning masses of heads and even gathering huge crowds of like-minded folks together in public.

    For now there is simply no argument: AR > VR.

  • As TechCrunch’s Lucas Matney noted: “Over the past several months it’s become clear that the war is no longer HTC and Oculus trying to discover who is Betamax and who is VHS, now they’re just trying to ensure that high-end VR doesn’t turn out to be LaserDisc. Though few of the big players are keen to readily admit it, many investors and analysts have been less than thrilled with the pace of headset sales over the past year.”

    The bald fact that neither HTC nor Facebook/Oculus has released sales figures for their respective VR headsets speaks volumes. (Analyst estimates aren’t generous, suggesting <500k units apiece.)

    Sony did put out some sales figures for its Playstation VR headset in February which caused some initial excitement — with the company claiming 915,000 units sold since October 2016.

    But by June that figure had merely drifted past 1M.

Todd Suomela

New World Notes: Palmer Luckey's Support for Pro-Trump Group Reminds Me of His Support ... - 0 views

    Palmer Luckey is the founder of Oculus.
Todd Suomela

Why Social VR Probably Won't Work the Way Social VR Developers Think - UploadVR - 0 views

  • Social VR arrives in the market at a time when broadband and mobile devices have totally remade our model of media consumption. Where it was once appointment-based, in which families and friends would regularly meet in person whenever their favorite TV show was on, we largely use DVRs and streaming services to time shift. Where content consumption was once built around passive, location-dependent contexts — think movie theaters, living room televisions — we now place-shift, carrying our content wherever our smartphones and tablets can accompany us. As this change took root, social media took the place of TV viewing parties. Instead of taking the time to watch our favorite show together with friends, we now share our viewing experience on Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat.

    Combine these two trends — slow growth of VR, plus time/place-shifting of content consumption — and you can see that social VR as it is typically conceived confronts a near-insurmountable adoption hurdle. Facebook and other VR developers are asking consumers to invest a fair amount of money and quite a lot of time on a platform most of their friends still don’t use (since most of them don’t even own a virtual reality device) which also runs counter to every content consumption convenience they’ve enjoyed for the last 7-10 years.

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