Oculus for Business is one way Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) is looking to bring Virtual Reality (VR) to the masses. The $900 professional Rift bundle is priced to make many small businesses consider the technology. Although not cheap, it is not prohibitively expensive. The question is, how can small businesses justify this expenditure, and what can they do with it?
Oculus for Business Bundle
The bundle includes Rift, Oculus Touch controllers, three sensors, and three facial interfaces along with dedicated customer support and special extended licenses and warranties. Facebook wants to make VR easy to deploy and as maintenance free as possible. The technology can be beneficial for everything from delivering advanced services like specialized raining to giving customers a better idea of the products or services your business offers.
By all accounts and forecasts, the VR industry is slated for a tremendous growth. Sources of these projections include the International Data Corporation (IDC) and its recently updated forecast for its “Worldwide Semiannual Augmented and Virtual Reality Spending Guide.” According to IDC, AR/VR products and services are expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 113.2 percent from 2017 to 2021. This growth is going to make the segment sky rocket from $11.4 billion to $215 billion within the forecast period.
For small businesses, this represents a huge opportunity across many different industries. On its blog, Facebook said, “Businesses of all types can use Rift to boost productivity, accelerate trainings, and present the otherwise impossible to their employees and customers — across industries like tourism, education, medical, construction, manufacturing, automotive, and retail.”
Facebook highlighted the early partnership with Audi, DHL and Cisco Spark VR, but the technology will be just as useful for small businesses.
Using VR, you can conduct personal training in dance, sports, art, music and more. You can also show properties, go over designs, and showcase your inventory for a more realistic and hands-on experience. As the technology improves and the Oculus Rift gets in the hands of more consumers, the business opportunities will grow.
Price and Availability
The Oculus Rift for Business bundle is $900. It is now shipping to the US, Canada, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK.
Both IDC and Facebook make a great case for starting to deploy VR technology in your small businesses. And the sooner you get started, the sooner you can incorporate VR into your, product, service or marketing mix– further distinguishing your brand.
I think that Oculus could improve though. The number of applications are still limited. Plus, I still keep getting headaches.