As we stated recently in a post about the top tech for indoor entertainments, we are only just entering the realm of consumer VR units. There may be several high-end consoles available for purchase but it still feels as if we’re only scratching the surface of the market. Because the industry will likely be extending itself in all kinds of new ways over the course of this year here are a few predictions for what’s next.
When people hear about cinematic experiences in virtual reality, they often first think of the idea of full-length feature films designed in a 360-degree format. This is something that we’ll probably start to see, but as explained in a recap of cinematic VR from this year’s Sundance Film Festival, this really involves any virtual reality that’s about observing, rather than interacting. That means it doesn’t necessarily have to be a traditional film where you can look all around you. The examples at Sundance showed various ways of experimenting with cinematic experiences in VR, and as the year moves along we’ll likely start to see some of these types of projects marketed to consumers.
It’s more or less guaranteed that whenever a new medium for gaming arises, poker games are soon to follow. It’s happened on PCs, in browsers, on mobile apps, and even through major consoles. Meanwhile, there is already a component that mimics the dynamic aspects virtual reality connected to some of the most widely enjoyed casino games. This page points out that most popular casino games now have companion “Live Casino” versions where players are transported are presented with real-time feeds of authentic casino environments with actual dealers they are able to interact with. It would seem only natural for this sort of experience to inspire a full movement into VR by popular casino gaming platforms.
One article put forth some broad predictions for VR over the course of 2017 and included the idea of “brand immersion.” This may ultimately be something worth paying attention to. Because a virtual reality headset can transport a user into any sort of environment or experience, we’re likely to see companies using the technology to simulate purchases and experiences. One example would be that instead of simply trying on a new outfit, you could throw on a VR headset and use it to simulate walking around a digital environment in the product, giving you a better feel for comfort and real world application. This is likely to happen across a huge range of industries and products.
These would seem to be some of the likelier developments in VR in the future, but they only comprise a small sampling of the overall potential for uses of the technology. We’re probably going to start seeing some experiences we would never have predicted as well.