The Next Big Thing
Virtual reality has arrived: Do you want it?Brian Cooley talks about the current state of the virtual-reality market and what kinds of experiences will be best suited for the new platform.
And then there were three, VR headsets. I'm Brian Cooley from CNet, always in search of the next big thing. We're on the cusp of the payoff of years of VR hype thanks to three head-mounted displays. Occulus Rift, HTC Vibe and Sony PlayStation VR. They've been coming forever it seems. Now they're priced and locked for release and on their shoulders. We will get a chance to unmask sample of completely new medium. Occulus Rift is gonna be about 600$ not including some motion controllers you're going to want. Pricing on those is still TBD and it has to look up to a pretty power. Powerful Windows PC. HTC Vive also tethers to a personal computer that might go beyond Windows to Mac and Linux as well. Price is higher at $799 US, but does include the motion tracking that would be optional with Oculus. And the inexpensive one, if you can call it that, is the Sony PlayStation VR at just $400 US. Pull off the Playstation camera you probably have that goes with the Playstation game console that you also need to power it. All three of these as you can tell are tethered by wires to this powerful bases of computers or game consoles. Now once you get any of these rigs almost certainly the reason you will do so and the first thing you'll do with it Will be gaming. I don't just mean gaming, I mean immersing yourself in gaming. You're in the game. You're moving through the game. You are using your hands and arms to pick up things and manipulate the environment of the game. Like I said earlier, this is not just an increase, In a quality of video. It's a break to a new medium. Now what's important to market of gaming is there's one that's even more delicious to consider and that is VR for sports. That's the kind of content where the immersive nature this technology makes total sense and, That content justifies long usage or wear times, but that long usage could be anything from fatiguing to nauseating. We just don't know yet. And it depends on the yet untested prospect of live streaming VR The other major in-depth use case for VR would likely be movies and television shows. Again, long form content appeals to a huge number of people, but the problem there is the completely new storytelling and envisioning process. When you put someone into a VR environment, it has to be worth it. It can't just be VR of what is basically one place to look. The whole scene has to make sense that you are going there. And that of course also means you're going to have your viewers looking all the different places. They will in a sense follow their own story line that's a very new world for the writers, producers, and editors of Hollywood. April Ralston creates long form, high budget content. And some we just don't know yet, the highs or the lows, the top or the bottom of the size of the VR market. One specter does lurk over its shoulder. No consumer technology has ever gone to mass scale that requires you to wear something on your face. This will either be the latest one not to or the first one to. Know what's next at CNET.com/NextBigThing. I'm Brian Cooley. [MUSIC]