Virtual Reality (VR) isn’t something people started to hear only recently. Tech-savvy people has been aware of its existence for decades. It sounded like a sci-fi concept back in the day – something that lets people explore an artificial reality. And it stayed dormant for years until just a couple of years ago when technological advancements revitalized VR.
Thanks to the advent of VR gadgets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, the Virtual Reality technology is now generating a lot of buzz, also catching the attention of businesses that are looking for innovative ways to interact with potential customers and give them a great shopping experience. Despite its potential, VR is still not quite there yet. The present VR-powered User Experience isn’t compelling enough for the public to widely embrace the technology.
When Project Oculus Rift started as a Kickstarter campaign in 2012, it raised over $2 million emphasizing the public interest in VR. The Oculus Rift became successful soon and was acquired by Facebook for $2 billion in 2014. Now there are even more VR gadgets with more reasonable price tags. Still, public adoption has been slow.
What is it about VR that rouses people’s interest in it but still is incapable of enticing people to adopt it?
This blog explores a few challenges that are holding back the VR industry’s growth.
Meeting consumer expectations
VR has apparently become too big for its own good. In 2018, a few tech experts noted that VR innovation is slowly losing its momentum while the public’s expectations grow. The fictional depictions of VR, the hype surrounding its potential, and the investments it attract have collectively contributed to increasing the public’s expectations of VR. They want perfect VR devices now which is unrealistic for VR companies.
If the UX doesn’t look very appealing or if the VR device isn’t comfortable to wear, consumers won’t be willing to spend considerable money on VR at all for a while. VR experts still need to make way for further advancements if VR is to be fully ready for the world today.
User-friendliness of VR hardware
Many VR headsets are commercially available today. But consumers may find the hardware quite uncomfortable. These VR headsets are bulky and mostly aren’t fit to be worn comfortably for longer than a couple of minutes. If the headset is comfortable, it’s likely at the cost of certain good design aspects. In a nutshell, we don’t have a perfectly comfortable VR headset yet with the best audio-visual immersion that VR promises.
A few VR gaming gadgets found success however. But there are reports that many gamers find them uncomfortable after using for a while. This makes getting user-friendly hardware for VR gadgets a major challenge for VR companies. Meanwhile, companies like Facebook are already working on VR gloves that would likely pair with the now Facebook-owned Oculus Rift headset. This could be an indicator that VR will likely overcome this challenge quite soon.
An intuitive UI that nails it
Once a user puts on a comfortable VR headset, they will be looking forward to the user interface expecting something appealing, intuitive, and easy to understand. It’s the UI that teaches the user how to interact with the VR program. This means the audio and visual quality should meet the high expectations of the users in order to impress them. That right there is the challenge. It will take a while before VR reaches that point where the audio and visual quality bridges the gap between reality and virtual reality.
Great VR hardware and an intuitive UI are key components of a VR system. If a VR company possesses these two attributes, they will be faced with the challenge of combining these attributes for a wider range of applications that will contribute to a broader acceptance of VR technology.
As of now, VR shines best in the gaming industry. A number of VR games gained great praise last year but that’s about it. Though there are a few emerging use cases, VR still doesn’t have an application that will make it essential for both consumers and businesses. Figuring out the right VR content is a challenge alright. But from where things stand now, it’s highly likely that we will see better, more convincing use cases of VR this year coupled with some killer content that will drive VR adoption significantly.
Are you thinking about leveraging VR to improve how your business communicates with your customers and prospects? We can build you a proper VR application to do that and more. Get in touch with us to learn more about AOT’s VR app development expertise.