Throughout history, just about every invention has faced a fair share of uncertainty. Martin Copper, the inventor of the first handheld mobile phone, didn’t expect it to replace landlines in his lifetime; Steve Balmer, former CEO of Microsoft, doubted the iPhone could capture significant market share; and Time Magazine famously (and falsely) predicted online shopping to flop.
Today, Virtual Reality (VR) is the invention that many don’t see much use for outside of entertainment. However, early trends show its presence gradually expanding into one of the more unlikely areas — payment processing.
Fun and Games
For now, skeptics are on the safe side of history, since most of VR’s capabilities still belong in the world of entertainment. Gamers praise it for its immersion, which can now also be applied to in-game payments they make.
Since 80% of gamers cite simplicity as the primary reason for choosing one payment method over the other, any solution that offers an even greater ease-of-use is bound to have an edge. Thanks to VR, they can now leave their wallets back in the real world and enjoy the convenience of making transactions without even removing their headsets.
Try Before You Buy
While in-game purchases typically don’t represent a significant investment or require a lot of consideration, there are products that do — take luxury accessories, for example.
Last year, Mastercard and Swarovski launched a VR shopping app that immerses potential buyers into the experience of walking though the very real-looking rooms of a virtually designed house. There, they can browse Swarovski’s crystal home decorations and even purchase them simply by looking at the Masterpass button located at the bottom of their view.
Online Goes Offline
VR’s role in online shopping doesn’t stop at crystals and home décor. In fact, it’s just the start. As more adults become familiar with VR and as the younger generations of technology natives gain greater purchasing power, the entire retail industry could undergo significant changes.
These days many stores are open to the idea of using VR to display their products, which can help them reduce inventory and significantly limit required physical space.
Makers of bold predictions about technology are prone to errors (as seen at the beginning of this post), so that’s why we’ll let time tell what else the future of VR has in store. What we can predict though is how much you can save on payment processing — contact TransNational Payments to find out!