In the last few years, virtual reality has expanded beyond video games. It is growing from the sphere of ‘purely for fun’ to becoming an important innovation in business. In some crazy new ways, VR is an important opportunity for the future of money making. Here are some of the money-making methods VR has already explored – proving just how popular this sense-altering experience already is.
Amazon is testing a virtual reality shopping experience that could ‘transform the future of retail’. They premiered it for their Prime Day events in Indian malls where shoppers can walk around virtual store sections such as ‘bath and beauty’, pick up products in 3D and read their information. The idea is a clever one because it intrigues those customers who are reluctant to transition to online because of the lack of a sensory experience. As you can see from the video, consumers in India were impressed.
Surprisingly, there are many different ways VR could transform the lottery. Through the VR lottery winners have won lifetime supply prizes. It’s already possible to buy lottery tickets online instead of queueing up at the post office or supermarket, but what if VR could have a dragon bring you a ticket in a golden egg or have the act of purchasing a ticket occur as part of a mythical minigame. Or better still, VR could simulate the authentic post office queueing experience, from the comfort of your own home. As silly as it sounds, these are the weird and wonderful opportunities VR can transform. Simulating even the tiniest everyday experiences is brilliantly useless and very meta, showing some of the interesting directions VR could go in.
“Virtual Reality Demonstrations” (CC BY 2.0) by UTKnightCenter
As part of street fundraising, UNICEF workers use VR headsets to show people the environments that their money can help. The headsets are used to simulate a Syrian refugee camp, which allows people in developed countries to come closer than ever to understanding the experience of refugees in dire circumstances and how donations can help. This sympathy created through VR helps UNICEF collect money to help people in need by providing potential donators a more relatable and visceral experience.
Armstrong predicts that cryptocurrency will be soon be used in virtual reality worlds as well as non-VR gaming titles like Second Life. It makes sense to have one digital currency to use within games because then it is the same for all international players. He also suggests that when these currencies come about, there will be money-making opportunities in virtual worlds if the hours are put in. People could buy clothes for their avatars or real estate in the game and make money through user-generated content.
VR has expanded far beyond simple gaming to the point where any individual can make money on the platform. From buying a lottery ticket to building content in a virtual world, VR is bringing new spending and earning potential to all who use it.