As cool as Virtual Reality headsets are, they are just not as popular as they could be. But why? Why wouldn’t people want to be transported into an alternate reality?
Well, cost definitely factors into the unpopularity. However, there is one other reason that may surprise some. People just aren’t that interested in VR.
Thrive Analytics recently conducted a survey to research the reasons that VR headsets have not lived up to the hype. They surveyed US internet users ages 18-65+ and reported their findings this past March.
The results differed based on age range, but generally the survey showed that most people aren’t very taken aback by the technology.
Overall, 53% of all respondents cited the reason of lack of interest for them not buying a headset. When broken down into age ranges, over half of 45-54 year olds said that was their main reason, while 67% of respondents 65+ said the same.
This is not surprising given that the target market for VR is the younger generation. Still, 39% of 25-34 year olds reported to not be very interested in purchasing a set either. For the youngest age group of under 25 years old, lack of content was more of a deciding factor than lack of interest.
Thrive included other reasons in the survey as well such as poor quality of content and the fear of getting motion sickness.
However, the biggest reason for the general apathy towards VR is cost.
VR headsets do not come cheap. If the target audience is young adults, then there is one very apparent problem: their demographic simply cannot afford to purchase a VR headset. This was the most popular reason for not investing in a VR headset according to 18-34 year olds. In fact, 43% of total respondents said cost was the determining factor.
Is cost something that will change?
In order to make VR headsets more affordable, quality and content may have to be sacrificed. But will this really make them more popular?
Without a demand for recent VR headsets, the future of improving the technology to drive down the cost may have to be put on the back burner.