One of things we strive to do at AmusementMarketing is bring you the latest trends as we see them – that way you can prepare for tomorrow. Today’s trend that we want to talk about is the rise of virtual and augmented reality in our industry. As we all know, technology of late is widespread. It is stretching itself into almost every nook and cranny of our lives. New emerging technology is moving into the market daily, and if you aren’t leveraging them to create new experiences for your customers, you’re missing critical (and cool) opportunities. Virtual and augmented realities are the next exciting innovations to take hold in our life, the amusement industry especially.

What exactly are these realities, and what do they do?

Virtual Reality

Remember this Samsung commercial over the past holiday season?

Putting on the Gear VR, users are transported to a new interactive reality to explore. They may be on an unknown planet or deep undersea. This is Virtual Reality: total immersion in a new world, making users feel transported to a totally different dimension.  It’s a powerful experiential tool, but it’s not the only one at your disposal…

Augmented Reality

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Last year, the Internet was captivated by a viral sensation nobody anticipated: Pokemon Go! The game utilized Augmented Reality – defined as an enhanced version of reality created by the use of technology to overlay digital information on something viewed through a device (such as a smartphone camera) – to allow players to encounter virtual pocket monsters not simply within the game, but in the park, in their neighborhood, everywhere! Pokemon Go took the “fastest time to gross $100 million by mobile game.” It took a mere 20 days to reach that impressive figure. When it comes to incorporating Augmented Reality into your amusement attractions, the possibilities are still being discovered. Stay on top of tech, because when it comes to revenue opportunities, you gotta catch ‘em all!

Three Reasons to Consider This New Technology

Give Guests More Options

Do you remember walking into an arcade and viewing the vast amount of games at your disposal? Well imagine that same feeling, but with Augmented Reality. With augmented reality, you can have a multitude of options for your guests. Check it out!

The video below that explains a product using augmented reality.

Open up a door to endless possibilities at your FEC!

A New World That Feels Real

The use of Virtual and Augmented Reality is increasing at amusement parks and fun centers across America. Big-name players such as Six Flags have been rapidly pushing the envelope with these new tool, teaming up with Samsung to offer Virtual Reality on six of its coasters in North America.

As Australian VR Park Zero Latency put it:

“Imagine a game that doesn’t feel like a game. Where your body is the controller. And your mind believes it’s real. The digital and real world meshed seamlessly together, to transport you inside the virtual like never before…”

Talk about going where no man has gone before! We can guarantee that if guests were able to experience this, they would be back for more.

Get Ahead of the Competition  

Have you heard of Dayton, Ohio? Home of the pioneers of aviation? Well, their stance as pioneers in the amusement industry has been noted as well. Scene75 Entertainment Center was nominated for the coveted Brass Award, being named the “Top Family Entertainment Center in North America” in 2016. One of the main factors in this decision was their new Virtual Reality activations! The space has 11 gaming stations utilizing the HTC Vive. By being a first mover in the marketplace, they were able to secure the top IAAPA award, beating out all competition in the race to the cutting edge.

Virtual and augmented reality still may be in their infancy, but you heard it here first! Keep these realities in mind when planning for the future!