Virtual Reality: The Future of Home Entertainment

Virtual Reality: The Future of Home Entertainment

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Boredom: the perpetual enemy of the human race. For as long as people have existed they have tried to find ways to pass the time, whether through telling stories, drawing cave paintings, reading, writing, or playing make-believe in the garden.

And with the advent of technology people have gotten even better at beating back such rainy day blues. In the last few decades we've seen televisions, video game consoles, computers and smartphones all enter into our lives and daily home schedules, for example. What then, is the next step along the path to 24/7 entertainment? Why, virtual reality of course!

How it Works

The stories of 20th century sci-fi are becoming a little less fiction and a little more fact every day. The concept of virtual reality is quite simple: your brain is tricked into perceiving a world other than our own through technology, usually via a pair of goggles and headphones. A 180 degree screen then hijacks your eyesight and applies it to whatever you can think of; educational apps about the universe and our solar system, Netflix binges, Star Wars sabre combat, live horse racing.

The applications of VR are practically endless. Open a new online casino player account, pocket your bonuses, then sit down to play Hold 'Em poker at a 5 star digital felt table. Browse reviews of the latest movies then project them onto a digital flat screen TV. Watch a YouTube video about a cool VR game, buy the game, then play it yourself all without ever moving a muscle (save for your thumbs on the controller).

The State of VR

As of right here, right now, today, VR technology is accessible and affordable around the globe - which is a pretty scary thought when you think about it! Major companies like Google and HTC are backing its research and development, maintaining a competitive market and healthy technological arms race. Headsets come at a variety of price points, from the tens of dollars (Google Daydream) to the thousands (HTC Vive), and they're getting better with every latest release. Some aren't even tech at all, but headsets that employ your phone as the hardware.

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Problems like vertigo, bumping into your computer screen or falling out of bed are all present day problems for VR in the layman's home, but they're being improved upon and puzzled out by developers as time goes on. VR certainly looks promising, for all of us. It might not be long until tech like this is in every home, in every school, in every country.

Into the Future

Only time will tell whether virtual reality will overtake more classic forms of entertainment like TV, but it's certainly a distinct possibility. 360 degree walking treadmills are in development, meaning roaming access within a virtual world without any need for controllers. Newer, better, more immersive systems are on their way. Better battery life. Better portability. Higher quality of screen.

Whether the masses will take to this ever advancing world of VR, let alone justify its asking price, remains to be seen.