Best Buy is looking to be at the forefront of virtual reality (VR) technology for consumers. The electronic retailer is betting on VR being the next big thing for mainstream consumers during this year’s holiday season, having announced that demos for Oculus Rift headsets will be available in 500 stores.
Not only that, but they are aiming to provide similar demonstrations for Sony’s PlayStation VR headset in around 200 stores this holiday season too, showcasing their belief that VR technology will be the next big hit with consumers.
The company had previously rolled out demos for both companies VR headsets, although on a much smaller scale than this. It looks like they are now betting big for VR sales this holiday season after the announcements of nationwide demos for each.
They believe that mainstream consumers are now ready for VR. Currently it is early-adaptors buying the technology, which has become more widespread with companies such as Samsung, HTC, and other getting in on the VR bandwagon.
Now they hope that anyone heading into Best Buy for some Christmas shopping will be lured by the prospect of VR headsets, which is why demos are being used. The technology is viewed by many as the next big thing, with consumers already cooling on iPads and other tablet tech in recent years.
Of course the technology remains in its early stages, and the fact that it costs several hundred dollars and involves strapping large googles to your head does mean there will be reservations amongst mainstream buyers – this is why demos are being used to help show what VR has to offer and the potential it has in the future.
Should it prove a successful venture, then Best Buy could be the leading electronics retailer for this new category of product, which could in turn help their inconsistent sales.
Video gamers are currently viewed as the biggest potential market for VR sales, although its anyone’s guess how other consumers will react. Best Buy has had success and failures when it comes to providing new tech for the masses.
They were hot on wearable tech, which actually helped to generate sales thanks to products like Fitbit trackers. Conversely, they invested strongly in 3D televisions many years back, only to receive a lukewarm response from buyers.
VR is still relatively new, with most tech that is currently available only being released within the last year. Predictions vary for sales, buy estimations for 2016 reckon 2.5 million could be sold come the end of the year.
Will Best Buy’s big bet on VR prove to be a winner? Only time will tell, buy it looks to be a bold strategy that could pay off big in the long-run.