Social Virtual Reality is a growing phenomenon that shows little signs of slowing down.
Delivering an immersive experience from the comfort of the couch has always been a dream of VR developers, but the problem is around the hardware. Traditionally, VR sets have been expensive, and with just 6.1m expected to ship in 2021, it isn’t a huge boom market. Currently, we estimate that the worldwide number of homes is around 16m, with an expected rise to 34m by 2024. As the sets hit living rooms, developers are sure to offer increased support.
How will VR embrace social gaming in the future? Here are three areas social virtual reality is likely to improve over the coming years.
1: Virtual Tours
Virtual tours of locations around the world are by no means new. However, technological innovation in this space has grown by leaps and bounds over the last few years.
You can visit many major cities, such as Paris, London, and New York, if you want to. In addition, some virtual travel experiences let you get inside famous landmarks and hotels, such as the famous Vittorio Emanuele II Gallery in Milan, the Cour Carré du Louvre in Paris and the MGM Grand Poker room, one of the best poker rooms, in Las Vegas. You can also discover places off the beaten path, such as Budapest or Edinburgh, while guided by an experienced local tour guide.
With technology ever-expanding, how long before every monument worldwide will offer you a full virtual walkthrough and allow you to visit with friends and family? We are very excited about this future.
Currently, Globetrotter VR offers live virtual tours that you can take with your friends and family. Our tours are built on Web VR technology, so you don’t need a special device to enjoy the full 360° degrees of the virtual city tour. Imagine going on a world tour with your crew without ever having to leave the comfort of your home?
If you’d like to book a virtual trip for a special occasion, get in touch with us to help you arrange a unique and unforgettable experience with your loved ones.
2: Shared Spaces
Already, facilities such as Facebook Horizon allows you to engage with others in a shared space, and that seems another possibility with the future of VR. For example, instead of playing a game with your headset, you could hang out with friends in a shared space. In addition, the popularity of platforms such as Minecraft, a world-building platform, makes it possible to interact with friends socially in worlds you can build together.
The ultimate dream would be a crossover between the video game and the world you have built, giving you the option to build as normal on your console, then load up the headset and invite friends to see your creation. That might even be within a game environment – Fallout 76 allows you to build your C.A.M.P, and there’s a Fallout VR experience. How long before you build your camp in-game, then invite other friends to come and hang out in it, in VR, playing mini-games or chatting as if you were in a diner?
3: Online Poker
The online poker industry is booming worldwide, fuelling the belief there might even be a second poker boom. Much of the success is down to the recent pandemic, which caused many physical casinos to close their doors. Even when restrictions were lifted, London casinos were still hit hard, offering watered-down services. That led people to their mobile devices and the world of online poker. The Guardian explains how sites offering online services have experienced a ‘significant uptick in website traffic’, and the industry has boomed as a result. The trick is to retain those customers as the pandemic restrictions ease, where virtual reality comes in.
Poker VR is already offering gamers the chance to play poker with friends in a virtual reality setting. The graphics may be rudimentary, but they marked a significant step in terms of the gaming experience. It offers a fully functioning poker room without leaving your living room, and it seems to be the first step into VR for the popular card game.
There’s certainly a future for VR in the gaming industry and in the social virtual reality space, but whether it can have a strong bearing on the industry’s future remains to be seen.