Mark Zuckerberg, founder of FaceBook and owner of Oculus, has recently said in an interview that he thinks VR will become mainstream perhaps 10 to 15 years from now.
Others have written that the high price tags for Oculus Rift and HTC Five (immersive virtual reality head sets for $600 and $800 respectively) have sunken the promise that virtual reality will become mainstream soon.
A recent survey found that only one third of consumers know that virtual reality headsets exists. I was among them until half a year ago.
However, participants of the same survey (3000 in total) said they believe that in 5 years half of the population will own headsets.
The various Google cardboards and Samsung Gear VR are headsets for mobile phone have lower price tags, between $20 and $100. Definitely in the more affordable price range.
Goldman Sachs published in an analyst note in January that they predict that VR will be bigger than TV in 10 years from now.
Deutsche Bank says in an analyst note that they think the VR adoption life cycle will equal to smartphones, which is 9 years to reach mainstream (=majority).
And we know by now the psychology of markets. Beliefs make everything happen. Will VR be mainstream 9 or 15 years from now?
Shauna Heller and other VR experts have said that we haven’t even seen the horizon of VR beyond gaming yet. Braxton Haugen said what will make VR mainstream are applications other than gaming.
The applications for VR mani-fold and still to be discovered. The medical domain has started to train their students with virtual reality, enabling them to conductsurgery, diagnosis, etc. many times before they see a real patient.
I believe that VR coaching and therapy will play an important role in this. The added benefits from research in therapy situations are too good to be ignored.
Which psychology of markets will win remains to be seen. I bet on VR applications other than gaming will be a critical contribution to make VR mainstream. I am ready to make the contribution by developing extraordinary VR coaching and therapy applications that the world has not seen before.
Nadja Muller-den Blijker