BBC VR Research Highlights Audience Pros and Cons

A study conducted by the BBC and research company Ipsos Connect has revealed what consumers perceive to be the benefits and drawbacks of virtual reality.

Participants were asked to use VR headsets over a three-month period for a range of purposes, including watching movies, music videos, and immersive virtual experiences like sky-diving, rollercoasters and horror stories.

The study garnered both positive and negative feedback. Many users enjoyed being able to consume content free from real-world distractions, likening the experience to a “virtual cinema”. However, some participants also reported a sub-par experience caused by a glut of technical problems, such as resolution dips due to poor Wi-Fi, and equipment overheating.

A proportion of users also found setting up the headsets and navigating the user interface difficult, and felt that wearing them while seated was awkward and isolating.

Senior market analyst Tim Fiennes warned that virtual reality faces many challenges to create a “frictionless user experience” and maintained that manufacturers should focus on user perception rather than technological advances, to avoid a “trough of disillusionment” like that suffered by 3D TV.