When Facebook bought out Oculus VR, a lot of people were wondering what in the heck Mark Zuckerberg and co. were thinking.
We’re starting to get a clearer view of what that might be: Facebook has detailed their plans for the future of VR and, needless to say, they say it taking over everything.
Sharing the results of a survey it conducted of 11,300 people in 11 different countries, Facebook told marketers that the future of VR lies in enabling consumers to see products ahead of time and interact with them in meaningful ways. Basically, Facebook thinks that VR will change the way you shop and live.
In what can only be bad news for brick-and-mortar stores, Facebook’s survey has revealed that a huge potential market for VR technology exists in the tech demonstration and product advertising market. Imagine video ads on the next level in essence.
Facebook’s survey didn’t just include VR applications for tech but also augmented reality as well. Both scored well with VR being particularly favored by consumers in the market for various products.
And, perhaps the single most impressive vote of confidence for VR, 65% of respondents on average see VR as being a major part of daily life in the future with 87% of Indian respondents particularly believing in the VR future.
In terms of what potential use for VR has the most support, product demonstrations, and previews dominated by far with 63% saying they would like to use VR for just that purpose. This outstrips gaming and every other application, including medicine, but shouldn’t come as a shock. Imagine seeing the interior of a new car without going to the dealership or, even better, envisioning an entire home without even setting down the foundation.
As one of the world’s largest advertising companies, Facebook makes a ton of its money off of user data and delivering advertising that is timely and appropriate. Their VR experiments seem geared towards this same revenue-generating sector and could be some of the most impactful work done in this niche. It’s not like Sony or HTC have a vested interest in advertising and the next-generation of commercials, but Facebook’s efforts could have a spillover effect into other areas of VR.
Interestingly, the survey also revealed specialized uses for both AR and VR that weren’t readily apparent before. It seems that consumers prefer augmented reality for things like cosmetics demonstrations and other small products while VR dominates when it comes to big purchases like a car or house.
Naturally, the whole thing was couched as a pitch to marketers to help them get on board with Facebook’s next-gen advertising efforts. Still, the preview of what is to come for the world of VR can’t help but bolster confidence in the segment, confidence that has taken more than a few hits these past several months.
If VR can breakthrough as an advertising medium like the television, we could live in a radically different world indeed.