AR – “Augmented Reality” or VR – “Virtual Reality”, they are going to stay fancy for a while but not mainstream unless advanced tech finds a way to eliminate external necessities to make that happen. It’s just like pre-facebook, social networks were everywhere already but it’s just too darn complicated because of those flashy fancy “FLASH” implementations which created unnecessary burdens for people to use them. Also, there were NOT any “CLEAR” purpose of those networks. The biggest name & obvious failure was from Microsoft’s creation which was pretty impressive and futuristic at that time (and still is if it were still alive). The “Circle” network which could expand your friends circles based on different scenario. It also had the followers and connectors feature. Moreover, it could let your circles listen to the music you were listening to simultaneously. Sharing videos … no problems at all. Getting all those social information… of course. Flashy and fancy features… bunch of them. But… it bowed to Facebook & Twitter… why? Because … it lacked of purposes… it was just too damn complicated.
If It’s For Mainstream – KISS
“Keep It Simple, Stupid” – this is the golden rule for any products aim to catch on the mainstream consumers’ minds. Why? Most of them just don’t care how great your products are if you require them to spend their valuable time to just simply know how to put their hands on your product. Remember that … our world is getting to a point that there aren’t that many real big problems needed to be solved anymore… so … they can live without whatever you are intending to sell to them. Think about that … before Facebook became ubiquitous, was Facebook a necessity for mainstream to get on? Nope… mainstream didn’t need Facebook then since there were that much need. However, Facebook got big then it became the necessity for everyone to get on to connect with friends. However, that’s the first wave of a product life cycle…. Facebook now is facing the second part of the product life cycle… which is a die or resurgent situation. Either it will be pushed to the back stage or Facebook will find a way to bring itself to the first part of the product life cycle once again. That’s another totally different topic and we will talk about that in the next couple of posts.
Our world is getting to a point that there aren’t that many real big problems needed to be solved anymore
So … back to the story of the pre-Facebook social network era. Microsoft did too much in the very beginning… therefore, it couldn’t ( also wouldn’t) get mainstream users engaged. Sure… it’s cool… it’s fancy… and … lots of people get on but they forgot about it after a while since … just too much to absorb. However, contrary to the Microsoft “Circle”, Facebook implementation seemed … “raw”... but it got to the point which was for college students to share photos (in the very beginning). It did that very well & very focused of course. Therefore, it took off and it took over the world. KISS – it’s always the golden rule for getting mainstream consumers attached.
KISS – it’s always the golden rule for getting mainstream consumers attached.
AR/VR Aren’t Going Anywhere Anytime Soon
It’s going to change the future for certain but how soon will they be on that course? It will all depends on how other hardware advancements we can have on eliminating external unnecessary burdens (e.g., putting on ugly and chunky headset like Microsoft holo lens). So long as those chunky hardware are still in the way, mainstreams aren’t going to buy in. Sure, everyone is interested and everyone wants to put their hands on … but … who will carry those chunky hardware with them all the time? No one. Or even … just put it on for some sort of … kind of … unnecessary tasks. For instance, AR e-commerce or VR shopping seems cool… but ask yourself if you need to put on a chunky hardware on your head every time when you do online shopping, will you do it? We guess that the answer would be “NO”. For us, we would simply fire our amazon app and get shopping done in seconds.
All Sorts of Startups On Making Amazing Inventions But … Is The Timing Right?
Again, … unless those products are for corporation users, it is doomed … it’s destined to fail… since … mainstream consumers won’t spend time onto complicated stuff. You might think that … those products/services aren’t complicated. Well… Even one extra step effort will kill a success of a product. Think about it that Android phones vs. iPhones… Why iPhones are still getting the most love despite thousands of other (seemingly more advanced) android phones are out there on the market? BECAUSE … iPhones are just one step easier than android phones (well… in the real world… it’s couple of steps easier though). Again, you might not think putting an extra headset isn’t such a big deal but, in fact, that’s a real deal breaker if the product is aiming for the mainstream consumers.
Even one extra step effort will kill a success of a product.
So … What’s Next?
The “AR/VR Glasses” is a start. It’s still another extra step but it makes carrying an extra AR/VR hardware device easier for consumers. However, it’s still not there yet. What we are thinking is that we recently saw more and more people constantly wearing Apple airpods all the time… so … what if the airpods sort of products having the ability to get AR/VR involved? Then … that’s gotta be something.