Commentary

Virtual/Augmented Reality Go Mainstream

The realities are becoming more accessible to the market.

We’re talking virtual and augmented realities here, of course, and there are some recent indicators that they both are on somewhat of a tear.

At its Windows 10 event in New York this week, Microsoft kicked off the third-party set of VR headsets coming from Dell, HP, Acer and Asus, starting in the $299 price range.

Earlier this month, Sony launched its long-awaited Play Station VR headset, a little pricier than the Microsoft-backed offerings but expected to ship more than 3 million before the end of this year.

Let by the explosive adoption of the Pokémon Go app, with hundreds of millions of downloads, augmented reality is booming as well.

The public awakening to augmented and virtual reality has led some major brands to look to get in on the action.

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For example, the NBA is planning to allow a game to be viewed through virtual reality for fans with a Samsung virtual reality headset. And Absolut labs created a ground breaking VR game with the vodka brand’s marketing unit.

There are some big numbers projected down the road. The overall AR and VR markets will grow to more than $2 trillion by 2035, according to Citi’s Global Perspectives and Solutions Group.

There already is a relatively large base of VR experiences that anyone can check out through an inexpensive Google Cardboard.

Consumers are discovering virtual and augmented realities in a big way. Marketing and advertising will be riding the wave.

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