Just Another VRticle: Why do we keep insisting VR isn’t where it should be?

Stock image from Pexels by Tim Savage.

Like most VR enthusiasts, I saw Ready Player One over the long Easter weekend – it was a film revolving around virtual reality in the year 2045 and finding an Easter Egg in the film’s metaverse called the OASIS. (Clever timing!) Interestingly enough, we’re nearing towards the HTC Vive’s two year birthday, and the latest and greatest of the HTC Vive Pro.

But with some criticisms over Vive Pro pricing, tough positioning for Oculus’ privacy due to the recent Facebook concerns on information it records and keeps, virtual reality’s issues on motion sickness, cost to entry… Where is VR now? Wasn’t it supposed to be the next big thing?

We live in a constant motion of instant gratification. We communicate faster than ever before with social media,things flash and disappear on our mobiles that mark a moment in the instant . There are people who don’t know the agony of waiting every week for the latest episode of Breaking Bad since the entire series can be binged on Netflix. Journalism is becoming a practise of sharing news as a race to the publish button at best and about sensational titillating facts that don’t really have an impact on our lives. We don’t even need to feed ourselves – food delivery comes to your doorstep. The truth is we already live in an incredible time where there is a great juxtaposition of extremes.

So VR isn’t in every household in America: Was that the measure of success? Was it realistic to ask?

I don’t think we were realistic to begin with, and the reasoning we’re slagging VR that it’s not as popular as Instagram is not because VR hasn’t delivered (it has), it’s that we’re manufacturing clickbait.

VR is exactly where it should be: there’s going to be years of experimentation in software development, computer visioning, and designing experiences. The best has yet to come and we are on a journey where there have already been vast improvements from year to year like HMD hardware for instance. Researchers are looking into ways to manufacturer smaller but powerful battery sources. We are facing a video card drought with the rising abundance of cryptocurrency miners.

So, stop it clickbait journalists: it’s not VR, it’s you. VR is where it should be: there is an entire global community of creators, researchers, and enthusiasts who are finding new ways to use and solve real world problems with VR. You can now learn anatomy by dissecting a virtual animal, design large trucks to support mental health with emerging VR solutions These things do not happen overnight like a game release does within a 6 month development cycle. By reporting on the sidelines, you’re miscommunicating so much hard work that has been poured into this emerging technology.

VR is going to take time… But here is our battle cry – we need to think BIGGER about VR and what Immersive technology can solve. Expanding VR’s relevance to daily challenges is where this technology is heading

And we don’t even have to wait until 2045 to get it. It’s here, where it should be.

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