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The Future Of Virtual Reality Isn't Your Living Room - It's The Mall

kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
A wave of public space virtual reality (otherwise known as location-based entertainment or LBE) is breaking, allowing everyone to experience new high-end home VR systems whose requirements puts them out of the reach of most consumers. Unique, large-scale experiences like free-roam VR, which can never be duplicated at home, will soon appear in malls and other retail destinations around the country.



Full feature - https://www.forbes.com/sites/charliefink/2017/03/07/the-future-of-virtual-reality-isnt-your-living-room-its-the-mall/#510e19793f36
urdgfqqehbbb.png
** Second New Book **
"The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
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Comments

  • snowdogsnowdog Posts: 7,494 Valuable Player
    It's a bit of a short-sighted view to have experiences that can't be experienced at home. I've said for quite some time that both Oculus and HTC need to have demo stations on shopping mall floors to raise the profile of VR, particularly around Christmas.

    Having demo stations in individual shops isn't going to attract enough foot traffic.

    If Oculus had a couple of demo stations where people could try out Medium, The Climb and Robo Recall they would sell A LOT of Rift's.
    "This you have to understand. There's only one way to hurt a man who's lost everything. Give him back something broken."

    Thomas Covenant, Unbeliever
  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    Its important to state that this piece was originally run in 2017 (though missed at the time) - but has recently been re-run by Forbes - I just wanted to make that clear, but it is a great discussion piece to share.

    I agree @snowdog, the "Oculus Demo Station" concept should be reborn - now that the individuals that killed this approach no longer work for the corporation it should be revisited.

    The closest equivalent would be what we recently saw at NY Airport:
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/charliefink/2018/06/29/periscape-vr-takes-off-at-jfk/#58955ea8391a

    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • snowdogsnowdog Posts: 7,494 Valuable Player
    The thing is that the demo station idea was a good one, just poorly implemented. We still have them here in the UK in a few John Lewis shops and as far as I know they still have them in Best Buy shops in the US.

    The flaw in the current setup is that the foot traffic is limited to that shop only, so people going to other shops in the mall, people window shopping and people just hanging out in the malls aren't going to try these things out.
    "This you have to understand. There's only one way to hurt a man who's lost everything. Give him back something broken."

    Thomas Covenant, Unbeliever
  • Hiro_Protag0nistHiro_Protag0nist Posts: 4,978 Valuable Player
    If there were enough of them i'd agree.  As i have said several times on here though - where the hell are they?  I'm begging for a VR arcade near me.

    And a VR warehouse type thingy!
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,713 Volunteer Moderator

    But how does the decline of the shopping mall play into that forecast? Sears, Macy & JC Penny in the US are closing up aren't they? and the malls that rely on the big name shops are declining accordingly. We're seeing the same signs in the UK, even John Lewis profits are in steep decline.


    Public space VR is great during the time that it's considered an expensive novelty but that's not how it will be in the future. Give it 5 years and I think it'll be considered essential by most hard-core gamers... 10 years and it'll be in most people's wish list, gamers or not.

    Intel 5820K [email protected], Titan X (Maxwell), 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4, ASRock X99 Taichi, Samsung 500Gb 960 Evo M.2, Corsair H100i v2 Cooler, Inateck KTU3FR-4P USB 3 card, Windows 10 Pro v1909 (18363.836)
  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    snowdog said:
    ....
    The flaw in the current setup is that the foot traffic is limited to that shop only, so people going to other shops in the mall, people window shopping and people just hanging out in the malls aren't going to try these things out.

    Agree @snowdog - the idea of the kiosk held water. And the original idea that BestBuy and OVR agreed was workable, but then was neglected.

    I know the stations you mean in the UK - if you had gone to the CES Oculus lounge this year, you would have seen a similar approach to the one they had previously run.

    We have some clients that run VR kiosks - and the issues they have to deal with is:

    - Difficulty of operation
    - Player understanding of operation
    - Cleaning
    - Vandalisum
    - Repeat play

    The last issue is the biggest problem - people will try kiosk once and then walk off, where the VR arcade approach offers a repeat-ability environment that can generated a good ROI.


    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • VR-OCALAVR-OCALA Posts: 483
    Trinity
    I contacted Oculus that I wanted to open a VR Arcade/Oculus shop where I would emo and help people with installation and answer questions after purchase.  I was told they were not interested.
  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    Wintermute
    THIS IS WHERE THE THREAD TITLE IS WRONG.
    The future is now and we don't need to leave the Home. In the future there will be no Malls. Just a mail order from Amazon & Google & Ebay type sellers. They will provide a Virtual Mall to walk around in.
  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    We just discussed this on the Oculus Facebook forum and I have to agree with one poster - in re-posting Forbes gives the wrong in perception of the story, and I may have added to that by posting it on my sites.

    I agree with you @MAC_MAN86 - the title is wrong for 2018, I would proffer this alternative:

    "The Future of VR Has Grown from the Livingroom!"

    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    Wintermute
    I seen loads of street demos of the Rift in Thailand, Pattaya's Walking Street. Plus they have a VR Games Shop in Phuket, Patong. Yes these are both the World's best hot spots in adult entertainment and it over shadows VR to be honest. I prefer to do my gaming in private not in public.
  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    Each to his own - interested about the Thailand culture for VR, especially planning a trip to meet some VR clients out there that claim the scene is undeveloped!
    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,713 Volunteer Moderator
    edited July 2018

    I was in Pattaya just before our VR revolution. I remember a lot of other entertainment related things from that visit.

    Intel 5820K [email protected], Titan X (Maxwell), 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4, ASRock X99 Taichi, Samsung 500Gb 960 Evo M.2, Corsair H100i v2 Cooler, Inateck KTU3FR-4P USB 3 card, Windows 10 Pro v1909 (18363.836)
  • RorschachPhoenixRorschachPhoenix Posts: 1,594 Valuable Player
    Problem is: Malls are dying.
    Excuse my bad english. I speak to you through the google translator. :P
  • MorgrumMorgrum Posts: 1,712 Valuable Player

    I was in Pattaya just before our VR revolution. I remember a lot of other entertainment related things from that visit.

    Oh and how many hopeful wives did you have to push away to escape Pattaya!
    Man that was a fun place to visit.
    WAAAGH!
  • MorgrumMorgrum Posts: 1,712 Valuable Player
    MAC_MAN86 said:
    THIS IS WHERE THE THREAD TITLE IS WRONG.
    The future is now and we don't need to leave the Home. In the future there will be no Malls. Just a mail order from Amazon & Google & Ebay type sellers. They will provide a Virtual Mall to walk around in.

    WAAAGH!
  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    Problem is: Malls are dying.

    I always have problems with sweeping assumptions - I understand your premise @RorschachPhoenix - but it is sweeping. For example the Factory Mall (Outlet) business in the States is booming seeing year on year profits, while the traditional shopping Mall (covered) are seeing challenging conditions. A mixture of online shopping and new social draws on disposable time & income. All that said, there is a drive in the mall scene to aim at a more "Retail-tainment" stance and already a number of successful projects have been seen internationally that paints a slightly more upbeat future for the mall than your broad brush stroke. 

    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • RedRizlaRedRizla Posts: 7,022 Valuable Player
    edited July 2018
    The future of Virtual Reality is in the home, it's just in it's infancy at the moment. If it reaches the Malls and does well that's great, but why does it's future have to be in the Malls and not in the home? Both options are good if they work. I used to like visiting arcades, but computer graphics improved so much on PC/Console that I didn't need to visit arcades anymore.  We have now reached a point where VR has become affordable to have in the home, so why not have it in the home? 


  • Techy111Techy111 Posts: 6,735 Volunteer Moderator
    Can we stop calling them Malls !!!! They are shopping centers  :p  
    A PC with lots of gadgets inside and a thing to see in 3D that you put on your head.

  • kevinw729kevinw729 Posts: 5,162 Valuable Player
    RedRizla said:
    The future of Virtual Reality is in the home, it's just in it's infancy at the moment. If it reaches the Malls and does well that's great, but why does it's future have to be in the Malls and not in the home? Both options are good if they work. I used to like visiting arcades, but computer graphics improved so much on PC/Console that I didn't need to visit arcades anymore.  We have now reached a point where VR has become affordable to have in the home, so why not have it in the home? 



    Its the same perspective that the cinema industry deals with - most people want to see a film in a cinema, even VR has emulated the cinema experience for home. But the big money is recurring revenue from home sales beyond rental.

    Not one is superior, they all have their own benefits, though IMAX, 4DX, 3D would be seen as better than inhome in many cases!
    urdgfqqehbbb.png
    ** Second New Book **
    "The Out-of-Home Immersive Entertainment Frontier: Expanding Interactive Boundaries in Leisure Facilities"
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Out-Home-Immersive-Entertainment-Frontier/dp/1472426959
  • RedRizlaRedRizla Posts: 7,022 Valuable Player
    edited July 2018
    @kevinw729 - Some people might want to see a film in a cinema, but you also have a choice and that's to watch a film at home. I like to watch films at home on my own tbh. I used to visit Cinemas, but I was always put off by some people making noises and laughing at things I didn't find funny. I much prefer to watch a film on my own now without those distractions..
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,713 Volunteer Moderator
    Techy111 said:
    Can we stop calling them Malls !!!! They are shopping centers  :p  

    Now Techy, don't tell me you don't enjoy a visit to the mall after soccer practice
    Intel 5820K [email protected], Titan X (Maxwell), 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4, ASRock X99 Taichi, Samsung 500Gb 960 Evo M.2, Corsair H100i v2 Cooler, Inateck KTU3FR-4P USB 3 card, Windows 10 Pro v1909 (18363.836)
  • RorschachPhoenixRorschachPhoenix Posts: 1,594 Valuable Player
    kevinw729 said:
    Problem is: Malls are dying.

    I always have problems with sweeping assumptions - I understand your premise @RorschachPhoenix - but it is sweeping. For example the Factory Mall (Outlet) business in the States is booming seeing year on year profits, while the traditional shopping Mall (covered) are seeing challenging conditions. A mixture of online shopping and new social draws on disposable time & income. All that said, there is a drive in the mall scene to aim at a more "Retail-tainment" stance and already a number of successful projects have been seen internationally that paints a slightly more upbeat future for the mall than your broad brush stroke. 

    Thanks for clearing that up. I meant the traditional shopping malls.
    But I am still not sure if this is the future of VR. I personaly would not go there. I like to have my privacy. I want to play VR at home. I don't like it to be surrounded by other people. I never liked those "attraction" things. Of course there is a market for that, because a lot of VR experiences are just those little, funny "try-it-once" things. And VR is not mainstream enough right now. So, I get it. But I don't think this is the future. It is the now. And the now will be gone very fast. The prices for the HMDs are too low. Back in the days the graphics of the arcades were mindblowing, but at some point you could by a console with good graphics.
    This is just my feeling, but I personly think VR/AR will be combined at some point. And you will carry it with you like a smartphone. Obviously this future is still a few years away. We will see.
    Excuse my bad english. I speak to you through the google translator. :P
  • Hiro_Protag0nistHiro_Protag0nist Posts: 4,978 Valuable Player
    Techy111 said:
    Can we stop calling them Malls !!!! They are shopping centers  :p  

    Filthy animal.  We call them shopping centres where i come from!
  • falken76falken76 Posts: 2,901 Valuable Player
    kevinw729 said:
    Problem is: Malls are dying.

    I always have problems with sweeping assumptions - I understand your premise @RorschachPhoenix - but it is sweeping. For example the Factory Mall (Outlet) business in the States is booming seeing year on year profits, while the traditional shopping Mall (covered) are seeing challenging conditions. A mixture of online shopping and new social draws on disposable time & income. All that said, there is a drive in the mall scene to aim at a more "Retail-tainment" stance and already a number of successful projects have been seen internationally that paints a slightly more upbeat future for the mall than your broad brush stroke. 


    Our malls look like Ghost Towns here in Tucson Az.  I think Malls will get a little life back in them once that new law gets implemented online and all of us consumers start getting robbed by taxes on purchases again.  I know I've made MANY purchases online to avoid the rip off of tax, now with shipping, there's little incentive to shop online all the time.  People might start coming out of their caves again and going into the malls, but I think this nation is a nation of sloths now so the sloth factor may still keep most shopping online.  But I think some people will start going back to the malls because of the internet tax.

    I personally think VR attractions would be a better fit for places like Dave and Busters or perhaps in Air ports where your target demographic might be stranded for hours on end between flights and sitting bored out of their skulls staring at VR kiosks that are littered throughout the airport.  If they can sell $12 whoppers and $10 Tuna Sandwhiches at the airport, surely they can sell vr attractions.  I really hope malls do come back, our future looks boring with dying malls, driverless cars and employeeless Amazon stores.  I lived through the reveloution of the Microcomputer and vividly remember the emphasis was always on how interconnected we would become with this technology and how much life would improve because of our ability to communicate better.  I doubt anybody of the time thought that future would be to aim for cars with no drivers and stores with no employees, we seem to get more anti social as tech develops.... Despite all our social media.

  • falken76falken76 Posts: 2,901 Valuable Player
    RedRizla said:
    @kevinw729 - Some people might want to see a film in a cinema, but you also have a choice and that's to watch a film at home. I like to watch films at home on my own tbh. I used to visit Cinemas, but I was always put off by some people making noises and laughing at things I didn't find funny. I much prefer to watch a film on my own now without those distractions..
    I don't like going to theaters because I can't pause the movie to go to the bathroom and honestly I can't stand sitting in one place for so damn long, my spine starts to hurt.  As for arcades, they have to offer something you can't get at home, that's why they died out around 1995 when Playstation 1 came out.   What VR arcades can offer that you can't get at home are the apparatus that the VR are connected to that adds to immersion, i.e.  The go cart and steering wheel in the VR Mario Kart Game.  So the places that hold these machines will have to be HUGE, but I think the hardest part would be in selling the experience.  Arcades can't have much depth, they are designed to eat money and those games usually have zero replay value.  It's a tough sale at 25 cents, 50 cents is a hard sale and $1.00 might as well be a Million because that's a lot for one game.  This is based on 1990's reasoning.  How much does a VR game have to get per play from each player to be worth while?  If you get into the $1 to $5 range I absolutely believe you will not get much revenue from repeat business.  How long will it take to pay off the investment of 1 vr attraction if they all have these expensive add ons that makes them appealing over home experiences in the first place?  I think Street Fighter 2 style multiplayer games might bring interests back to arcades, but again it has to be cheap, it can't be $1 plus, it can't even be $.50 cents.  The expense is why I think Dave and Busters type establishments would be a place to see this stuff.
  • inovatorinovator Posts: 2,271 Valuable Player
    Video gaming in malls and other places once was big. As games became more complicated and u had to put lots of money in the machines to extend your play it died. People woke up one day and said I can play the same games and more on my game console. Vr in malls are good for now but home tech will catch up with commercial tech. Current tech will still win since it's still going to be expensive to play at the mall on a regular bases for the amount of time u want to play if  u love vr.
  • cybernettrcybernettr Posts: 939
    3Jane
    edited July 2018
    So many pieces of wrong in the original story! I haven’t read the whole piece, just the posted blurb, and already I can spot several false assumptions:

    1. This is confusing early days of virtual reality with the current era (remember “Virtuality?”)  In those days, VR systems were so expensive individuals could not afford them 

    2.  “New high-end systems puts them out of reach of most consumers“ —  totally ignores the continuing Exponential price/performance improvement of Digital technologies.  Technology keeps getting better while the price declines. Example: Early mobile phones were so expensive only professional businessmen could afford them. 

     3. Malls are actually declining in popularity in favor of “big box” stores—check the stats. 

    4.  People don’t like using VR in public spaces because they look like dweebs – they become self-conscious. 

    5. “Unique, large scale experiences will never be duplicated at home.“ Wrong again – see my previous points. 
  • inovatorinovator Posts: 2,271 Valuable Player
    Experiences close enough will be diplicated.
  • DaftnDirectDaftnDirect Posts: 5,713 Volunteer Moderator

    @cybernettr, I've come to embrace looking like a dweeb in public, some of use do it naturally. Granted, public VR may take things too far!

    Intel 5820K [email protected], Titan X (Maxwell), 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4, ASRock X99 Taichi, Samsung 500Gb 960 Evo M.2, Corsair H100i v2 Cooler, Inateck KTU3FR-4P USB 3 card, Windows 10 Pro v1909 (18363.836)
  • inovatorinovator Posts: 2,271 Valuable Player
    It's funny how people care about what strangers think of how they look. I don't give a darn because those same strangers since they don't know you don't care If your  alive or dead.
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