Facebook Pushing Virtual Reality – And With Good Reason

facebook and virtual reality goggles

Nielsen released a report a few days ago listing the mobile apps that were most used in 2016. Out of the top eight, Facebook had first, second and eighth places. Not shabby at all. However, more context revealed in the report makes this performance even more impressive.

  1. Facebook
  2. Facebook Messenger
  3. YouTube
  4. Google Maps
  5. Google Search
  6. Google Play
  7. Gmail
  8. Instagram

It turns out that the American public isn’t really downloading new apps anymore, even though a whopping 88% of them have smartphones. Almost everyone seems to just keep using the apps they already have.

That statistic is obviously good for Facebook, since it already has a lion’s share of users. But there is another interesting tidbit buried in the report, as well. Games are actually providing 80% of the revenue from mobile apps, and that is good for Facebook, too.

The consensus in the tech community is that 2017 will be the year that virtual reality apps reach mass penetration of the market. And Facebook is heavily invested in VR.

The problem is that VR technology is hard to explain, and a lot of people don’t yet see it as something they would have any reason to even try. So Facebook has taken the unusual step of introducing pop-up stores in New York, Denver, San Diego and Phoenix through the end of next month in order to let people experience virtual technology for themselves.

Additionally, it has just been confirmed that Facebook has bought Eye Tribe, a Danish start-up that specializes in eye tracking technology which is not only able to enhance existing virtual reality technology immediately, but also provide user data that will be of interest to advertisers. Talk about win/win.