The much-hyped arrival of virtual reality appears to be taking hold with a new survey showing that brands that use the new tech are seen as forward thinking and their customers are more likely to buy the products on offer.
The study by US VR market intelligence firm Greenlight VR found that 71 per cent of consumers said brands that utilised the nifty headsets to flog consumers more stuff were seen as “forward thinking and modern”. A further 53 per cent said they’d be more likely to purchase from a brand that used VR over a competitor who didn’t.
Of the 1300 people surveyed, 91 per cent said they were happy and comfortable using VR technology. Of those who’d never used the tech before, 65 per cent said they were interested, 32 per cent were surprised by what the headsets could do and 58 per cent reported being “amazed”.
However, in its 2016 Virtual Reality Industry Report released in April, Greenlight VR said it would take another six to eight years for VR to go totally mainstream. It expected sales of VR headsets to reach two-million in the US this year; not the cardboardy ones but Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. By 2020 the report predicted that close to 37 million Americans would own a VR headset and that would rise to 136 million by 2025.
Commenting on its latest study, Greenlight VR’s head of research, Steve Marshall, said in a statement: “We’re seeing specific VR activities have unique emotional footprints, offering fascinating insights for those who are considering their VR strategies.
“For example, among our sample, watching a live broadcast event in virtual reality generates significantly higher ratings of positive emotions such as ‘happy’ and ‘energetic’ when compared with playing a VR video game,” Marshall said.
A further report by economics firm Deloitte Global said that the VR industry is set to have its first $US1 billion year in 2016. The report found 70 per cent of that will be in headset sales and the other 30 per cent will come from content.