Why Marketers Should be “Daydream”-ing with Google
by Camille Blanchard, VP, Head of Innovation, West Cary Group
Make way for the prevalence of portable virtual reality (VR). Forrester predicts that 37.9 million VR goggles powered by mobile devices will be in use in the U.S. market in just four years. Google Daydream could be the platform that powers this monumental growth – and the perfect way for marketers to stop dreaming about making their VR mark and start doing.
Introduced in May 2016, Google Daydream is set to launch next month on HTC’s Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones. All users have to do is slip their device inside the Daydream View headset and use the accompanying hand-held controller to guide the action. At $79, the View is more than $500 cheaper than its nearest competitor, the Oculus Rift. And if you pre-order the Pixel, several wireless companies are offering the Google headset for free.
At such an attractive price point, this could mean the beginning of VR for the masses. It’s no wonder that the Google VR development kit, or VR SDK 1.0, graduated from beta in September and was released to developers. The kit supports integration with Unreal and Unity, so developers can get started with familiar engines and tools. But users won’t have to wait around for VR content – Netflix, Ubisoft, HBO, MLB and The New York Times, among many others, have already delved into development for Daydream apps.
WCGi considers this VR opportunity an evolution, not a revolution. In our minds, the Daydream View, though ripe with promise, is a step up from Google Cardboard. Users won’t discover experiences as high tech as they will with, say, the HTC Vive, but that’s not Google’s intention. Rather, the tech giant is laying the groundwork for the coming VR explosion.
Well, Google, we’re picking up what you’re putting down. Currently, WCGi is fine-tuning ways to create truly transportive moments for the casual VR user. By leveraging the power of Google Daydream, we can benefit from:
1. A data-rich platform that allows us to collect information from specific moments to create even richer user experiences
2. A tool for immersive advertising that can invoke empathy and connection to a brand
3. A forum for exclusive content, such as granting consumers access to an event without ever leaving the comfort of their home
In short, WCGi is treating Google Daydream for what it is – entry-level VR full of possibility. Barriers are being broken. This is your brand’s chance to dip its big toe into the open water of mobile VR and prepare for a future that’s almost here.
Want to join us? Contact WCGi today. We’d love to explore ways we can enter this new phase of marketing together.