Why You Should Care About Virtual Reality

Why You Should Care About Virtual Reality
SHARE
THIS



The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), has wrapped up in LA and Dave Goodfellow from PR agency Rinsed was lucky enough to attend. At the event, Goodfellow got a peek into the future of content design, consumer behaviour and interactive marketing.

If you haven’t heard of E3 before, it’s one of the oldest and most anticipated video game conferences in the world. It takes place each year at the Los Angeles Convention Centre and this year, over 52,000 video game professionals, analysts, journalists and enthusiasts attended, from over 109 countries – which broke all previous attendance records.

All the major players in the video game industry exhibited, and what emerged was an outlook on content and marketing that promises to usher in the next wave of innovation and creative marketing.

So where are things going? All signs point to the next wave of games, content and marketing being driven through Virtual and Augmented Reality.

You’ve probably heard of Virtual Reality (VR) and/or Augmented Reality (AR) by now. What may surprise you though is that these technologies have been around for decades.

As early as the 1980s, academics and enthusiasts walked around wearing full desktop computers crammed into makeshift backpacks and head mounted displays to display VR and AR content.

The reason I mention this history is purely to demonstrate that we’ve come a long way and what’s now on the horizon is significant because a lot has had to happen to make this a reality.

A big barrier to the technology’s development seems to have been the consumer viability of virtual and augmented platforms. Like 4K content, and every other major medium shift, the adoption and implementation is heavily contingent on the hardware availability, performance, and cost.

Desktops in backpacks aren’t great consumer products, and it has taken this long for the right technology to be created, miniaturised and manufactured at a cost that consumers can appreciate – though it’s worth noting final pricing has not been announced for most hardware yet, but it probably won’t be anywhere near comparable to a $25 Google Cardboard VR headset.

The business case for VR and AR could also not have been justified until their appeal expanded beyond academic and enthusiast circles. This expansion has also become a recent reality thanks to the backing by Facebook, Microsoft, Valve and Sony.

Yet, despite the technology and business case for VR and AR tech becoming increasingly legitimised, the approaches of Oculus, Microsoft and Sony that were announced and showcased at E3 each have a very different spin on the way they’re aiming to capture the market.

Oculus has first mover advantage and has built a development community of almost 200,000 people. This gives Oculus an incredibly strong launch platform and innovation pipeline.

Oculus’ key success strategy seems to be cultivating its developer community and they’ve demonstrated this by committing to invest US$10 Million into independent game development for the Oculus Rift. To simultaneously expand the consumer interest from people who will play these games, they’ve also partnered with Microsoft – which is a major blow for Playstation.

Sony’s focus for VR is squarely on Playstation 4 and its community – which is huge too. The difference in approach seems to be that, Sony views VR content and its own headset “Project Morpheus” as a peripheral rather than a standalone platform.

At Sony’s E3 keynote, Andrew House, president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, said “[Project] Morpheus, like all features of the [Sony’s] Entertainment platform, is a choice and adds value and life to the hardware.” Which demonstrates the peripheral vs platform mentality.

Limiting usage to a single platform may seem like a risky move, but that’s really what console manufacturers have been doing for years. Think Playstation VS Xbox, PC vs Mac etc. Having exclusive content can drive loyalty and differentiation. And,

Sony’s VR experience is very good too. I had the chance to play with it at E3 and it was tons of fun. It felt very real and if the quality of content will give Microsoft and Oculus some very serious competition.

Microsoft has arguably the broadest and most diverse approach of the big players. I’ve been discussing VR and AR until now, but Microsoft is the only company to be seriously tackling them both. Here’s why:

In addition to its partnership with Oculus, Microsoft has also announced a partnership with Valve VR which will make Windows and Xbox the platforms of choice for VR. This doesn’t seem to be a grab at content either. It appears to be a move that is aiming to standardise APIs and other development standards for virtual reality – something that is sorely needed for developers, given the increasing number of options available to them in the VR industry now.

The impact that standardisation delivered by Microsoft could have is huge. Essentially it has the power to make VR content easier to produce, distribute and consume while also making Windows the platform of choice for VR, which will make it easier for marketers and creators to utilise the technology.

By adding VR to its list of features for Xbox One and Windows 10, Microsoft is adding value to its community in the same way that Sony is trying to with Morpheus. But! At the same time, Microsoft has also gone off on its own AR tangent into Holographic Computing with Microsoft HoloLens.

The important distinction between AR and VR is that virtual reality is an entirely digital experience; where as augmented reality blends the physical AND digital worlds together.

Microsoft gave a demonstration HoloLens’ during its E3 press conference that showed someone playing an interactive version of Minecraft in real 3D space on a tabletop. This demonstration was a jaw dropping moment, and left gamers salivating. But if the gateway to VR and AR experiences is through specially designed headsets then do we as consumers really need or want two different types of headsets?

If VR and AR are truly the future, then marketers need to seriously think about new content and how a VR experience or an AR experience can enhance our brands/clients and also how the audience, appetite and experience of VR and AR differs – something that we’ll only find out as it continues to develop, but likely sooner rather than later.

Latest News

Daylight Agency Appoints Shelley Hammond As Director Of Agency Operations
  • Media

Daylight Agency Appoints Shelley Hammond As Director Of Agency Operations

The Daylight Agency’s significant growth has continued with the appointment of Shelley Hammond as Director of Agency Operations. Shelley is a leader in the global communications industry and brings vast experience following senior roles in major corporates as well as the agency environment. Shelley will be responsible for the commercial running of Daylight including client retention and […]

Host/Havas Takes Out Cannes Grand Prix With Palau Pledge
  • Advertising

Host/Havas Takes Out Cannes Grand Prix With Palau Pledge

Host/Havas has secured Australia’s first grand prix award at Cannes overnight, taking out the top gong for the direct lions with its work Palau Pledge. The work, which sees all visitors to the tiny island nation have their passport stamped with a pledge to be a good environmental citizen, which they must sign before entering […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Ridley Scott Unveils New Directors Showcase At Cannes
  • Media

Ridley Scott Unveils New Directors Showcase At Cannes

Curated this year by Ridley Scott, famed director of Alien, The Martian and other classics, The New Directors Showcase at Cannes is now in its 28th year. Acting as a platform for talented new directors to have their work premiered to a global audience, Scott took to the stage in front of a full house […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
ANZ, PHD & JCDecaux Harness The Power Of Data
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns

ANZ, PHD & JCDecaux Harness The Power Of Data

ANZ and media agency PHD have partnered with JCDecaux to launch a unique campaign that harnesses the power of data across three cities incorporating actual tram, train and bus timetable information to align with the new ANZ App.

Report: Consumers Are Hitting Play On Mobile Video
  • Technology

Report: Consumers Are Hitting Play On Mobile Video

Ooyala survey finds media companies created and processed nearly three times as much video content in Q1 as Media Companies Created & Processed Nearly Three Times As Much Video Content in Q1 2018 vs. Q1 2017.

MercerBell Calls In Two New Data Hires
  • Marketing
  • Technology

MercerBell Calls In Two New Data Hires

Proving many photos shot on an iPhone so often come out washed-out and grainy comes this article's accompanying pic.

Intrepid Travel Go Back 30 Years, Posting Classified Adverts In Newspapers
  • Campaigns

Intrepid Travel Go Back 30 Years, Posting Classified Adverts In Newspapers

Intrepid Travel has gone back in time and is placing classified adverts for a new ‘mystery expedition’ to places that yet mapped by Google.  The adverts to be placed in Courier Mail, Herald Sun and Sunday Telegraph are calling for intrepid people to join a journey with “long travel days, intermittent electricity, no Wi-Fi, cold […]

Watching tv and using remote control
  • Advertising
  • Media

GroupM Investment Forecast For Australia: TV On The Rise As Digital Slips

GroupM has updated its 2018 ad investment forecasts and released its initial 2019 outlook. GroupM predicts $24B in net new advertising investment this year, the best annual increment since the bounce back from the global recession in 2010 when $26B was added to investment. GroupM estimates total advertising investment will grow by 4.5 per cent this year […]

Indigenous Campaign Deemed Too Controversial By APN Media To Run
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns

Indigenous Campaign Deemed Too Controversial By APN Media To Run

Aboriginal Victoria’s campaign in support of Australia’s first-ever treaty legislation, Deadly Questions, has been deemed too controversial to run by one of Australia’s leading outdoor media providers, APN Media. Online platform Deadly Questions provides a safe space for people to ask questions and have them answered by Aboriginal Victorians, to learn more about their cultures, […]

Introducing: YouTube Music Australia
  • Technology

Introducing: YouTube Music Australia

The wait is over! Starting today, YouTube Music is available to everyone in Australia, New Zealand, the U.S, Mexico and South Korea in addition to 12 new countries including Austria, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Now fans around the world can find more of the music […]

Will PR Finally Earn Its Stripes At Cannes This Year?
  • Opinion

Will PR Finally Earn Its Stripes At Cannes This Year?

In this guest post, Haystac’s national general manager, Jason Carnew (pictured below), says with all this talk of Cannes at this time of year, it’s a kindly reminder that the PR business needs to get its act together in terms of awards, work and judging… All eyes on are Cannes as some of the best […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Ex-DDBer Unveils Designer Headscarves For Cancer Survivors
  • Campaigns

Ex-DDBer Unveils Designer Headscarves For Cancer Survivors

Two-times cancer survivor, Frankie Good Stuff Award Winner, ex-DDBer and founder of Bravery Co. Emily Somers has collaborated with a range of top-notch illustrators to produce Australia’s first range of designer headscarves for young cancer warriors. She is now crowdfunding $40,000 to produce the scarves and donate one to all the young women in their 20’s […]

New Advertising Platform Launches Down Under
  • Advertising

New Advertising Platform Launches Down Under

Following its massive success in Europe, Asia and the UAE, the Polishoe concept, which brings a high-demand shoe polish service and HD digital advertising platform together, has landed in Australia.

Women In Media Profile: Aimee Buchanan
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Aimee Buchanan

No Women in Media series would be complete without the irrepressible Aimee Buchanan. Read all her pressibles here.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Set for blue sky, different clouds icons, cloud shapes, labels, symbols, icons. Flat graphic vector elements
  • Technology

PubMatic Unveils Cloud for Publishers And Tech Companies

PubMatic has launched PubMatic Cloud for publishers and tech companies looking to implement and control their own programmatic technology. By accessing PubMatic’s technology, global infrastructure and demand connections on a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) basis, clients are able to achieve full transparency and achieve greater control over their programmatic monetization. As programmatic trading becomes mainstream, innovations such as […]

Women In Media Profile: Claudine Hall
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Claudine Hall

The Women in Media Awards are back for 2018! To celebrate this wonderful fact, and to recognise some of the killer women in our industry, we’ve created a women in media series – and have profiled some pretty inspiring women so far. This week, we chat with Bauer Media head of trade marketing Claudine Hall. […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Cancer Council and Target Tradies Tackle On-The-Job Skin Cancer Risks
  • Campaigns

Cancer Council and Target Tradies Tackle On-The-Job Skin Cancer Risks

Workers on construction sites receive five to 10 times more UV exposure every year compared to indoor workers. Target Tradies and Cancer Council have announced the launch of a partnership to help educate Australian construction workers about the importance of being SunSmart at work. With evidence showing that outdoor workers receive five to 10 times […]