Within days of each other, the $600 Oculus Rift and $800 HTC Vive started arriving at homes around the world. While early bird customers are concerned about when their devices will ship and orders are back ordered for months, VR is on a path toward mainstream adoption. It might still take years, but, despite shipping woes, VR’s first two weeks seem to be a success.
Here’s a recap of what happened.
Rift deliveries officially began with the hand delivery of the first Rift in Alaska.
Personally delivering the first Rift to Alaska!
Posted by Palmer Freeman Luckey on Saturday, March 26, 201
The device was called the “product you hope your neighbor buys” by the WSJ. Some reviews suggested it might be worth waiting until the price comes down or the Oculus Touch hand controllers arrive.
The Rift began arriving at homes within days of the Vive, which included hand controllers.
“Can I Go First?”
The above videos has been viewed more than 1 million times at the time of this writing. According to a Valve developer:
None of the people in the video are professional actors and none of the reactions or comments were scripted. In fact we had to edit out some of the most awesome reactions because we were pretty sure people wouldn’t believe them, but the reactions and comments are all actually genuine.
A pair of Job Simulator videos has each been seen millions of times too in just a few days, with Jacksepticeye playing through the game.
Reddit also discovered that you can trace a real life chair in Tilt Brush to provide an easy way to sit down while not interrupting your virtual world.
Even VR skeptics found Audioshield to be a ton of fun.
What does success mean?
Tentatively, I’d call consumer PC-powered VR’s first two weeks a success as a whole. Look at the videos above and you can see the first VR devices driving a lot of fun. That’s all that matters. After two weeks, PC-powered VR looks like a lot of fun.
That said, if people stop playing with the Vive or Rift over the next couple months or the devices stop working right, there are going to be a lot of frustrated people and it’s possible VR’s adoption could be slowed. A lot of people understandably want their Rift or Vive to come — they’ve waited years for it — but if you want VR to change the world all you should care about is that, when it arrives, it’s a good experience.
Even so, we still have PlayStation VR to look forward to and millions of people are going to be seeing Gear VR and Google Cardboard this year too. No matter what happens to PC-powered VR, it’s still possible the technology can have its breakout year in 2016.