Is virtual reality really making its way?

Tech giant Facebook is totally committed to virtual reality, virtual reality. Not only for gamers or very specific applications, but also to meet colleagues or live a concert on the other side of the world. Facebook sees virtual reality as the new social platform.

Last month, the company introduced a new be unique A virtual reality viewer, the Oculus Quest 2, which according to experts is better than the competition in many aspects and also much cheaper. But there are also critics: the company collects a large amount of data about the user through the glasses.

Interesting for a large audience.

“I think the new glasses are game changers,” says Schelte Meinsma, founder of virtual reality app developer Vrroom. His company created many apps for governments and businesses. For example, an MRI experience for children, so they are prepared for a real MRI.

Meinsma cites the low price and quality of the Facebook headset as big pluses, making VR interesting to a wide audience. “What Elon Musk is to electric cars, Mark Zuckerberg is to us.”

The good thing is that it feels ‘real’. The energy is better than with a video call.

Schelte Meinsma van Vrroom

With virtual reality goggles, you completely isolate yourself from the real world, but the world of virtual reality is becoming more and more social. Facebook mainly sees virtual reality as a social platform, for example to meet with colleagues who work from home.

Meinsma already does it within his company. “The best thing is that he feels ‘real.’ The energy is better than a video call,” he says.

Vrroom is now working on several ‘social’ VR apps. For example, the company wants to organize ten virtual concerts with renowned DJs next year in collaboration with Art of Dance. About a hundred thousand people have to come, five thousand of them with VR glasses.

Are you unable to attend your favorite football match in the stands due to corona, or are you too late to order a ticket for that festival? VR glasses offer a solution:

With a virtual beer in the stands, or at the concert (for which you did not have a ticket)

What is possible in VR?

Youtuber Casandra Vuong also hopes to be able to visit more and more virtual reality events in the coming years. “I’m pretty small, so at a real concert I don’t see anything when I’m in the back. At virtual concerts you can walk wherever you want and have contact with the artist himself. Really cool.”

Vuong has been heavily involved with VR for four years and also sees a new period dawning now that Facebook is investing so heavily in the technology. “There are two sides to that. The fact that Facebook is spending a lot of money is good for the VR industry. But the company also wants to collect and use a lot of data. A lot of VR fans criticize that.”

Because Quest 2 only works with a Facebook or Oculus account (Oculus was bought by Facebook in 2014). The glasses generate a huge amount of usage data: your movements, what apps you use, your physical characteristics and images through the cameras of the glasses.

Meinsma: “Facebook can use the glasses to know what emotions the user experiences. That type of data makes the experience and the services better. The discussion we have to have is if we want that or if it affects our privacy too much and so on.” we do not want”.

Great demand for VR glasses

Facebook wants to further dominate the virtual reality market in the coming years. The company already controls about 38 percent of the market. Research firm IDC expects virtual reality to grow 46 percent worldwide in the next year.

Recent figures on the Netherlands are missing, but according to the Smart Tech monitor (March) of the market research agency Multiscope 700,000 people in our country have VR glasses. However, most of them (73 percent) work with a smartphone. IDC considers that form of virtual reality to be out of date due to the lack of good content and the “toy” nature of the experience.

Webshop Alternate sees a high demand for VR glasses, partly due to the corona crisis, and specifically because of the new Facebook glasses. The company sees a 60 percent growth in sales of the new Quest goggles compared to the first version of the Quest.

We previously showed that VR glasses are revolutionizing mental health. By allowing patients to practice in a virtual world, various psychological issues and addictions can be addressed.

How virtual reality glasses help with psychological problems

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