With the launch of virtual reality (VR) head-mounted displays (HMD) drawing ever closer, the need to ‘try before you buy’ is ever present with VR technology. Most industry insiders would agree that for VR to take off consumers need to experience what VR is all about rather than just reading other peoples views. The HTC Vive will be coming out towards the end of 2015, but HTC hasn’t revealed how the company plans to promote the HMD, while Oculus VR has mentioned plans to put demonstration units in retail store.
In a recent interview with Road to VR, Palmer Luckey, Founder of Oculus VR said about the issue, “Yes, we will be in retail. And we will have demos in retail so that people are able to try [the Oculus Rift],” then adding, “Because one way to show people VR is to show them at a trade show or a gaming show, another way is for them to try their friend’s unit, and the other way is for them to be able to try it out someplace else, and we want to make sure that they have that ‘someplace else.”
Whether Oculus VR plans to have the demo units stationed worldwide or just in the continental US is unclear at this time. But having the units properly manned will also be another issue, so that consumers trying VR for the first time will get a proper experience. At trade shows and events Oculus VR has had trained staff to assist, ensuring visitors get the best possible introduction to the companies HMD, how well this translates to retail stores remains to be seen.
VRFocus will be following Oculus VR and its launch plans for the Oculus Rift as they are announced.