STATES CHRONICLE – The market is growing hotter, and Google creates a division dedicated to virtual reality to keep up with the demands of a blooming industry. It’s almost certain that 2016 will be VR’s year, and probably the few more to come. It’s a new field, it’s exciting, and could only add to the major market that is gaming.
Google first introduced us to virtual reality through their Google Cardboard, a low cost option of experiencing VR through your smartphone and a simple headset. It has seen to excellent success, thriving from partnerships with the New York Times, ‘Star Wars’ plus Verizon, and Nissan. And those were mostly in a year where the virtual reality industry was not marching ahead full steam.
In 2016, giants such as Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR will launch their own take on the matter and numerous titles. They will range from gaming to applications that are set to slowly dip the toes of the population into virtual reality. The high-end headsets will need a powerful system to back them up in order to bring the players into the immersive worlds.
And yet, analysts predicted that it’s Google Cardboard who will stay in the lead of sales. For 2016, their predictions claim that the tech giant’s $20 headset will stay ahead of the pack. It will be followed on second place by Oculus Rift, then by HTC Vive, and then by PlayStation VR. Without specs or confirmed prices, it’s difficult to understand what will truly happen, but it’s interesting that Google Cardboard might stay ahead. And Google is certainly willing to expand their services.
The company means to clearly strike the iron while it’s hot. Product manger Clay Bavor, who was previously in charge of major branches such as Google Drive, Google Docs, and Gmail, will be heading his own division that will focus on virtual reality. That means that more content is coming, and the company is doubling their efforts into the new field.
According Mark Thompson, CEO of Times, VR is already generating profit. They’re expecting to make more in 2016, and Google Cardboard will be the perfect agent to deliver their message. The VR short film ‘The Displaced’ has seen great success. The Times is planning more content this year, all backed by Google Cardboard.
With such a powerful outlet, Google will have a strong ally. Both have a shared interest in committing to the good quality of the content as well as an immersing experience. Creating more and more content might just place Google ahead, as analysts predicted. Not to mention it’s small price when compared to the high-end headsets. Users might want to start slow with Google Cardboard, and then seen if the investment in virtual reality is worth it. That turns the affordable device into the front line of testing.
Furthermore, the company also invested heavily in Magic Leap, which focuses on augmented reality (AR). It’s likely that VR and AR will meet together on Google Cardboard, or at least each have its own branch to garner the interest of numerous customers.
Image source: guim.co.uk