Retailtainment VR has emerged as the high-stakes “holy grail” of entertainment content creators, and the winner remains to be decided.
The drive towards physical presence in retail space has been seen through many ‘retail’ projects – such as pop-up attractions in high-traffic locations.
This is best illustrated by the virtual reality attraction “Army of the Dead: Viva Vengeance” from Netflix which toured several Westfield commercial locations internationally. But having a retail space to promote and sell immersive technology was a tough balancing act.
Recently, Meta threw its hat in the ring, launching its first Meta Store in Burlingame, California, to promote its portal device, AR glasses and VR headsets on the shelves, along with an LED screen VR display area.
The company claims that its first Meta Store will be used for experimentation and learning in order to roll out future iterations.
This is the latest attempt at a retail presence by Oculus/Meta – since Best Buy’s undiscussed “Oculus Rift Demo Stations” in 2016, which were forced to close due to sluggish performance. Or the short-lived Oculus Rift-S demo stations in Microsoft Stores.
Meta will join the shiny line of consumer VR manufacturers who have installed VR demo areas in their stores, like Google and Microsoft — just to close.
The current Meta administration seems to have failed to learn from its predecessors – or work with location-based entertainment, the only industry facing virtual reality hardware – and is just too hard to swallow.
Meanwhile, other tough lessons have been learned, with internal sources citing a significant slowdown in sales, and even returns, for its Quest2 VR platform.
Meta Reality Labs lost $2.96 billion on $695 million in revenue during the first quarter of 2022. The pressure is mounting on the embattled founder, as he gambles everything on his dream of a walled park.
Dead calls for time
Meanwhile, Meta warned investors in a statement that they now feel it won’t “flourish” until 2030, when they see real growth in their plans – a change of date from previous predictions of 2024. The question now is whether investors will allow them to continue spending big on This dream with the continued decline of promises.
The company also recently announced plans to partner with ILMxLAB to bring the “Star Wars: Tales from the Galaxy’s Edge” experience at Disney Springs Resort. This will include a demonstration facility with Meta Quest 2 headphones available for guests to book to test their Jedi skills in the virtual game experience.
ILMxLAB, a subsidiary of LucasFilms, the developer of virtual reality gaming experience, previously partnered with Oculus (rebranded Meta) with “Lightsaber Dojo” – a similar VR pop-up arena, developed in partnership with Nomadic VR during 2019. Six arenas deployed For a short time at Cinemark and Simon Centers in the US and Canada.
So the show continues
Meta isn’t alone in following up on VRspace. The VR platform, Pico, is also doubling down.
Owned by ByteDance, which also owns social media platform TikTok, Pico plans to launch the Pico Neo 3 Link in the West with the European Union putting up a limited number of units for water testing before launching a next-generation standalone VR headset at a later date. the year.
Beko is in a position to sell in Europe, while other companies have found it difficult. This move is still only a temporary development towards a full market launch.
DPVR, the developer of Chinese VR headsets, formerly known as Deepoon, recently revealed its plans to launch a standalone VR headset DPVR E4 Pegasus in direct competition with the Quest 2.
Around the same time, the first images of Apple’s entry into the VR/MR scene, with its “Apple View” hood, were leaked to the media.
Global politics also influences VR content creation.
Many Russian LBE VR device developers have been silenced by the ongoing conflict and subsequent international sanctions.
Arcadia-VR, a virtual reality game development house for both LBE and consumer platforms, announced on social media that it will be closing its Moscow locations due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Retailtainment VR has emerged as the high-stakes “holy grail” of entertainment content creators, and the name of the winner remains to be mentioned.
(Editor’s note: Excerpts from this blog are from recent coverage in The Stinger Report, published by Spider Entertainment and its director, Kevin Williams, the leading interactive outdoor entertainment news service covering the immersive frontier and beyond.)