The author quotes Morgan Housel's stages to how people respond to new tech. He thinks we're at Stage 5:
I use it, but it’s just a toy.
I kind of disagree. My opinion being my own, I still kind of see people generally fall into steps 2/3:
I’ve heard of it but don’t understand it.
I understand it, but I don’t see how it’s useful.
The VR echo chamber, of which I've been unabashedly a part of for about a year and half, is strong and loud. I've noticed that many devs, designers, and enthusiasts working in VR and using VR currently need to slow their expectations. If you don't like VR today, for instance, you probably won't find much to like about VR in the next year or two. For instance, I strongly believe quality VR/MR will be adopted at a rate fractionally proportionate to the adoption of high-end gaming PCs with general consumers.
VR is a great new way to experience entertainment. It's still a far, far ways off from being able to usurp actual reality. There are strong emotional and psychological binds there that will take years to overcome for most folks.
My 2 cents anyway. Generally really enjoyed the piece, and always encourage more VR discussion, especially on DN.
Can agree - cost is too high for personal use, value of it at this point is irrelevant, hardware support isn't ubiquitous enough
We all forget that VR was tried 20 years ago and we had the same kinds of issues then too
I think the relatively small swell we see now is going to push mobile hardware makers to race to get the best VR-ready hardware, and that's when we'll see VR/AR take off. You're right, no-one's rushing out to buy a high-end PC tower (can't speak for PSVR, haven't tried it).
That said, it gives some time for the content and workflows to get there as well. It's already come on a lot from gimmicky roller coasters and jump scares.
The important thing about that Hausel analysis is that it only works in retrospect, it has no predictive power. Lots of technology gets to the toy stage and stalls: jetpacks, flying cars, segway, Google Glass, VR previously, 3d tv....
Exactly. This is silly.
For every airplane that proved its naysayers wrong, there were roughly, I don't know, a million actually bad ideas that were rightly criticized as bad ideas and never became not bad ideas.
VR will be incredible for a few very small niches. But I'd be surprised to see it go beyond that, and even if it did, I don't want it to. So I'll continue to be a naysayer.
This article and its tone make me kind of realize why Tim Cook and Apple keep saying AR will be significantly more popular than VR. Besides media and entertainment, I don't see VR handling organizational or enterprise applications (or many other non-consumption-oriented tasks) very well. Why would I need VR to look at my Dropbox files?
AR may be able to take on that challenge more naturally. But who knows? I could be one of those grumpy old Luddites.
before the world recognizes that they couldn’t imagine a life with only this reality.
I would warn against unreservedly embracing a virtual one simply because we have the technology, and before it has justified itself morally. Can anyone here argue a moral justification for virtual reality (without resting on the assumption that technological progress is inherently good)?
Virtual reality, as an example of an emerging technology, bears little resemblance to the Wright-Brothers-plane and laptop examples (as an aside, I know Erik Sandberg-Diment; his appearance in this article put a grin on me). Those objects did not create an entirely different reality. This does.
I would say that it lands on step 3. The general public understand that it's a virtual reality that you go into when you put a headset on. Other than that, not many people can find the use.
The price point is still to high to get a VR device for something that people may not be completely sold on. The starting point is $600-$800. At that starting point, unless companies have solid ideas on WHY someone needs a VR, it'll still remain something that rich people use or people that are really into tech.
The Playstation VR will most likely be the entry point to the average consumer because if all else fails, they still have a gaming / entertainment system to fall back on if they hate VR.