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Wearable Tech

More joy for your stick: VR porn makes a splash at E3

"Gamers are a key audience for us," says the chief information officer at porn studio Naughty America. Judging by the queue at the booth, he might be right.

Josh Miller/CNET

"They're the right demographic, they love new things and they're very excited about VR": Ian Paul, Naughty America's CIO, talking about gamers at the company's booth at E3 2016.

It's the first time exhibiting at E3 for the renowned purveyors of adult entertainment. In fact, according to Paul, it's possibly the first time adult entertainment has ever been at the show. (And to be thoroughly clear, we are talking about adult entertainment of the pornographic kind.)

The booth is tiny compared to the behemoths of Microsoft, Sony, Ubisoft and the other big name game developers, but the crowds certainly suggest that the company hasn't missed its mark. It's also surprisingly open, given that Naughty America is demoing its VR porn. No closed room demos for Naughty America: It's proud of its product.

While the booth is concentrating on using the Samsung Gear VR to show off the goods, if you will, Paul tells me that the company is developing across all major VR platforms.

"We've always been an innovator and an early adopter of technology," says Paul. "Streaming, mobile, HD and 4K -- VR was always a natural step."

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Josh Miller/CNET

It's certainly proving a hit with people happily lining up to watch a porn sizzle reel, a selection of bits from Naughty America's 50-something VR scenes. In public.

When my colleague Scott Stein tried a VR version of an adult film during CES at the start of the year, he called it "one of the more eerily successful examples of VR-ready video" that he'd ever seen. I'd have to agree. And when Paul tells me that the company uses a proprietary VR rig to film the scenes, it highlights how seriously Naughty America is taking its move into this format.

"The gaming industry has solved half the equation for us when it comes to VR," he says. "We need people to have headsets and gamers have been great adopters of that."

There's certainly a crossover, too. Releases of big games, like Fallout 4, have led to significant drops in traffic to porn sites.

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But he also sees the relationship as a little symbiotic: "We're the helping industry make it a value proposition for gamers to buy headsets". In other words, you might buy it for gaming, but hey look: There's so much more you can do with it.

"It's not a big stretch to say 'hey, wanna take a break from gaming? Try some adult content.'"