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Why Isn't Everyone Living in an AR/VR World?

Poor user experience among many hampering widespread appeal

Interest in augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) has been hyped for some time, but the tech hasn't reached mass adoption. Cost is certainly a factor, but it's not the only one.

A survey of 140 US AR and VR professionals by law firm Perkins Coie, conducted in January, found there are indeed several obstacles hindering mass adoption.

The biggest one? User experience.

Some 41% of respondents said that bulky hardware and technical glitches were one of the main reasons VR hasn't reached mass adoption, and almost as many (39%) said the same for AR.

Lack of quality content—and the amount of content out there—was another hindrance, as was consumer and business reluctance to embrace both technologies.

Then there's cost, which (unsurprisingly) was another top reason mentioned. AR and VR devices can cost consumers hundreds of dollars. And what's the point in investing in a device that's lacking in quality content and a good user experience?

Perkins Coie's findings are in line with a March 2017 survey by Thrive Analytics, which also found that price was a major reason why many people weren't buying VR headsets. But other reasons included a dearth of content, poor quality and an overall lack of interest.