The Destiny of VR vs TV’s Battle: Only One Survives

Virtual reality lived and died over twenty years ago. Simply put, thing like the Virtual Boy didn’t cut it. Now, after Oculus Rift was swiftly Purchased by Facebook for $2 billion dollars, suddenly virtual reality is making a comeback. Everyone and their grandmother is bringing out a VR headset, which begs the question: “Will virtual reality replace television?” The answer, as you can imagine, is complicated. Should VR succeed, it was most certainly take over. Then again, there’s always the chance it will flop. Let’s take a look at both sides of the coin and decide which device will rule your living room. Goodbye 60-inch, Hello VR Headset! There’s most certainly a crowd that believes televisions will become a relic. Among them is the founder (and recently made very rich) owner of Oculus Rift: Palmer Luckey. While the price of his headset is astoundingly high, the fact that it has Facebook backing it up means it will have massive mainstream exposure. Then you have Sony who is going all in on PlayStation VR which is a similar headset for the PS4. On top of that, Microsoft is slowly but surely perfecting their HoloLens augmented reality headset. Sprinkle in the HTC Vive which is being sponsored by Steam/Valve, and you have yourself a growing market of devices ready to do battle with one another. Palmer Luckey, in an interview with Maximum PC said some interesting things on the subject: “Why in the world would you buy a 60-inch TV that, even if it were dirt cheap for that, it’s still going to cost a lot to ship it and make it from raw materials. A VR headset is going to be much better and much cheaper and you can take it anywhere.” Luckey has some points, but his claims are clearly based on his infatuation with VR seeing as how he started a company about it. Like many other radical claims, the quote was met with plenty of scorn and a few attacks at Luckey himself. People tend to react drastically to major changes like this. Palmer Luckey isn’t the first person to make a bold claim about his industry is going take over, and he won’t be the last. For someone who is just entering the industry, a major win like Facebook purchasing you is bound to go to your head, and it also adds a huge amount of pressure to convince the people you interact with that your product is the one and only option for the future. Realistically, the future Palmer Luckey envisions won’t be here anytime soon. Nothing in the gaming/electronics industry is drastic. Sure, you have plenty of upgrades and iterations, but its very rare that a technology is swept under the rug overnight. It’s a gradual change, with HD-DVDs being the exception (sorry, but does anyone actually remember those?). The issue that people have is they are comparing the Oculus Rift launch model with, say, a 4K TV that just hit the market. To put … Read More