What VR means for the TV industry

更新时间:2017-01-16 20:31:00点击:1682151 行业动态

The Virtual Reality sector is predicted to balloon in the coming years as new headset technology, games and content all hit the market. Today, VR enthusiasts already have a number of options ranging from HTC’s high-end, PC-tethered Vive headset, to Samsung’s Galaxy smartphone-compatible Gear VR, and Facebook’s Oculus Rift headsets which launch in Europe in September. However, the October launch of Sony’s PlayStation VR headset, which is designed to plug into PS4 consoles, and the autumn release of Google Daydream – a mobile VR platform that encompasses smartphones, a reference design for a headset and controller, and apps – means that by Christmas VR technology will be in more people’s hands than ever before.

Analysts clearly believe in the momentum behind VR – both 360° video and ’true VR’, which is typically computer rendered. Research firm IDC predicted earlier this year that worldwide shipments of virtual reality (VR) hardware will “skyrocket” in 2016, reaching 9.6 million units and revenues of US$2.3 billion (€2.1 billion). A Diffusion Group study from January claims that by 2025 VR will have a global user base of more than 275 million people and Futuresource Consulting predicts that total global spend on VR video and games content will reach US$8.3 billion by 2020. Meanwhile, Cisco’s most recent Visual Networking Index says that VR web traffic will increase 61-fold by 2020.

For those that have tried the technology, VR has a profound ability to place people into alternative realities and to offer new experiences and perspectives. But will this new category of entertainment be a be a significant application for broadcasters and TV service providers, and if so, how should they be preparing themselves for this?