Every virtual reality (VR) company faces an uphill battle when it finally comes to actually getting consumers to purchase head-mounted displays (HMDs). VR is a technology than needs to be seen first-hand to be understood, making some of the more traditional marketing materials like trailers and screenshots much less effective. No one understands this more than Oculus VR, the company behind the Oculus Rift HMD. In fact, the VR specialist thinks that, more than anyone else, it will be friends that sell others on VR.
Mitchell said as much in an interview with IGN. He began by noting that the Oculus Rift will have in-store showings, much like the company’s Gear VR mobile HMD, which is made in partnership with Samsung. “For Gear VR, Samsung has set-ups in Best Buy stores where you can go and try out a Gear VR,” he said. “And you can expect something similar for the Rift. We want there to be a place where people can try it because they need to try it to get what it’s all about.
“Though I also think, more than anything else, that it will be about people showing it to their friends. ‘Guys, I got a Rift, you have to try this out.’ And word will spread as to why virtual reality is so cool, and why they’ll want to get a Rift,” Mitchell concluded.
The Oculus Rift is set to launch in the first quarter of 2016, though Oculus VR is yet to attach a specific date or price tag to the kit, only confirming that it will cost at least $350 USD.
VRFocus will continue to follow the Oculus Rift closely, reporting back with the latest updates on the device.