VRS 2017: What You Need To Know – Part 1

Glenn Sanders Insight Articles

VRS Conference 2017 Recap
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Greenlight Insights' annual Virtual Reality Strategy Conference last week brought together 450 of the top executives from the VR, AR, and MR arena to share their insights and connect with other industry leaders. This is Part 1 of a series recapping insights from VRS 2017 that will explore the intel you need to know now and in the future, from experts in the field.

Content is king: experience it over and over again

When asked about what the industry needs to be successful, Guy Primus, CEO of VRS said that, “More than likely it is content that is compelling enough that people want to experience it over and over again, and companies that create that kind of content.”  This same sentiment was reflected by other speakers throughout the conference.  Most experts agreed that more affordable and accessible hardware will lower the entry bar for the general public and for enterprises to acquire a headset, but it content is what will keep them coming back and continue to experience.

AR Dragon is an example of content with “stickiness.”  It is currently the number one ARKit app, featuring a pet dragon that you feed, play with and nurture over time.  This kind of ongoing interaction keeps people coming back to the experience.

LBVRE for the masses

Location-Based Virtual Reality Entertainment for the Masses

Source: Greenlight Insights

Mr. Primus also feels that location-based VR, “will be the thing that brings VR to the masses because you don’t have to buy anything or set up anything.  I think the social element of that will become big too.  The critical mass will come next year at least on the coast when most people have access to VR via LBVRE.”

VR = More effective training that scales easily

VRS 2017 Opens with Keynote from Accenture

Mary Hamilton, Accenture Technology Labs

Mary Hamilton of Accenture shared the results of case studies using VR for immersive training.  Ms. Hamilton said that training based on “VR is more expensive, but much more effective for comprehension and retention.  And once developed, it scales easily.”  

To illustrate the effectiveness of VR for training, Accenture clients have reported improvements in quality, and that people who are learning in VR caught their errors sooner.  One example was CPR, where students retained 20% of the teachings from traditional training, while VR trainees retained an average of 80% of the material.  I know which type of training I would want in an emergency!

VR for Training at VRS 2017

Source: Accenture

Hamilton described a continuum from paper-based instruction to fully immersive VR training.  She observed that, “Simple things don't need VR.  For complex activities, and things you want to scale up, you can do that in an immersive state” in VR.

AI + VR = An exciting combination

Looking across all types of technology, Hamilton believes that, “AI is the one that has the most rapid uptake of all new tech.  It’s not general AI.  It’s the [specific] use cases.  How do we take those use cases and bring AI and VR together?  Helping you understand behavior that needs coaching in a new creative way.  It’s the combination that is so exciting.”

In the following weeks, we will explore more of the valuable insights that were disclosed at VRS 2017. 

To order a summary of key session takeaways and analyst insights, order the Virtual Reality Strategy Conference Insights Report.