Disney’s ILMxLab and John Lewis – along with FoxNext and Zero Latency – are demonstrating that experiential location-based virtual reality (LBVR) is a viable business investment, which can be leveraged to spark consumers’ mundane brick-and-mortar store experience into something ‘out of this world’.
According to the latest Worldwide Virtual Reality Tracker Report conducted by Futuresource Consulting, LBVRT is gaining momentum, with consumer spending expected to reach £579 million by 2020.
John Lewis is the UK’s first retailer to satisfy its customer appetite for virtual reality experience by running a series of HD visual interactive sessions in its flagship Oxford Street store in London. Gatwick Airport, on the other hand, has put virtual reality to work to enable travellers to navigate the airport easier, conduct seamless mobile payments and overall provide travel-makers with the facilities never offered before.
Overall, the VRcade sector has 4,000 worldwide locations of which those in China account for 75-80%, offering a low-cost and consequently limited-quality experiences, reveals the same body of research.
Conversely, at the other end of the spectrum are high-end, free-roam and interactive multi-player ’location-based’ VR experiences. By 2020, multiplayer VR experiences are predicted to account for 41% of Global LBVR consumer spend.
“Q1 2018 saw significant growth and rising consumer spending, which is expected to lead a full year spend £214 million in 2018 across the four types of LBVR categories as [shopping] arcades, multiplayer experiences, VR cinema and VR theme parks,” explains Carl Hibbert, Associate Director of Consumer Media & Technology at Futuresource Consulting.
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