2016 was the year in which Virtual Reality (VR) exploded into the consumer market place; with mass market products such as the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR making the dream of VR in the home a realistic prospect. We also saw the development of Augmented Reality (AR) solutions like Microsoft HoloLens, bringing the idea of the seamless mix of the digital and real world one step closer. The realisation of these technologies as viable solutions has led to many market analysts and leaders to project massive growth in the next few years, including industry specialists Digi- Capital, to forecast these technologies to be worth around $120-billion within the next three years.
The Future of the Industry?
How does this impact the developing online gambling industry? As with any development in a technology focussed industry, the impact of the VR/ AR will be profound, giving players a much greater range of ways in which to play their favourite games as well as unique types of game. Many of the market leaders in the $50-billion online gambling industry are already exploring the ways in which they can use this technology to open revenue streams from existing and future VR users with some trailblazers already bringing games to market specifically for VR players.
With the range of different games and styles available in the online gambling arena, it’s hard to say exactly what we will see launch as the industries and technologies develop, but we’re already seeing some exciting products come to market…
Roulette is possibly one of the hardest traditional casino games to transition to online casinos effectively, with so much of the excitement of the experience being linked to the real-world environment, atmosphere and other players in the game. Whilst this has been hard to replicate in the online gambling environment, VR opens new avenues of interactivity and immersion which will finally make this a realistic prospect for online gambling businesses to deliver.
The 2016 industry event ICE Totally Gaming 2016 saw the unveiling of many exciting innovations, including an innovative VR Roulette system, giving an idea of how this game could work in the VR world.