While virtual reality (VR) technology has gained plenty of new fans over the past few years, there are still more than enough people out there than don’t believe in the new medium. Those that are yet to be convinced have several reasons for this, one of the more popular lines being a comparison to 3D TVs. It was just a few years ago now that these devices failed to replace standard sets across the mainstream, and many fear the same will happen with VR. But, according to Half-Life developer Valve, this is a ‘poor comparison’.
The company’s Chet Faliszek stated as much during his ‘The Year Ahead in VR‘ talk at the 2015 EGX consumer show in Birmingham, UK today. “3D TV didn’t change the way you explore you experience content,” he said in a section that addressed common concerns about VR. “Virtual reality fundamentally changes the experience, it’s a poor comparison. We’ve talked about immersive experiences before, we’ve talked about interaction before, but never before did we break through the fourth wall and put you in the scene. This really does change everything.”
Sony Computer Entertainment’s (SCE’s) own failure to bring mass 3D TV adoptions to the PlaySation 3 is what gets many worried about the company’s own VR solution, PlayStation VR. However, as Faliszek mentioned, VR goes far beyond what was possible with 3D TV, immersing you within an entire world rather than having it simply jump out at you from a screen in your living room. It’s convincing a mass audience of its worth that will prove to be a real challenge, especially with the nature of VR meaning people have to see it to believe it.
VRFocus will continue to follow each and every VR HMD, reporting back with the latest updates on them.