September 5, 2018,   2:16 PM

How AR, VR, And Blockchain Is The Future Of The Entertainment Industry

Forbes Middle East


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It’s hard to underestimate the disruptive impact of the internet on how people view content, socialize with friends or receive information and news.

Over the last decade, social media platforms, video-sharing websites and video streaming services providers have transformed the way in which people receive their news, watch television series, and keep in touch with friends.

The dawn of blockchain technology has added another potential dimension to how content is disseminated, recorded and monetized.

Although most people identify blockchain technology with digital currencies, it can, in fact, be applied to a wide variety of industries outside of financial services. Supply chains, data management, and social media could incorporate distributed ledger technology to provide more streamlined, efficient and cost-effective solutions that are currently on offer.

Blockchain combined with virtual reality and augmented reality can radically transform the way in which people play video games, view concerts, and watch television.

Already, Netflix has demonstrated how over-the-top media can deliver entertainment and content directly without the assistance of Hollywood Studios or network channels.

AR/VR combined with blockchain could take existing services to a new level, not only will people be able to view concerts, matches and play video games in a fully immersive environment, they will also be able to receive targeted adverts while watching and pay for products over the blockchain using digital currencies.

Preferences and activity could be recorded on an immutable ledger and people could for the first time interact with advertised brands and view products in a 3D environment before buying them instantly using digital currencies.

This technology has the potential to upend the current business models underpinning entertainment, advertising, and retail services. Currently, the VR market has grown from a $2.6 billion market in 2015 to a $20 billion market today and is estimated to reach $66.68 billion by 2022 (CAGR of 58.3%).

Digi-Capital forecasts AR to reach $85 billion to $90 billion revenue and VR $10 billion to $15 billion revenue by 2022. The tide is turning towards mass AR/VR adoption and this will transform the way in which people view content, play video-games and receive adverts.

Underpinning this AR/VR entertainment ecosystem will be the blockchain. This immutable ledger enables information and data to be recorded and transactions to take place between individuals, entertainment providers and retailers in an interactive and immersive environment that has never before been possible online.

The internet in the 1990’s transformed people’s daily lives and disrupted existing business models in ways that could never have been foreseen by industry experts at the time. Distributed ledger technology has the same disruptive potential and is beginning to enter the mainstream consciousness.

How businesses learn to adapt and incorporate distributed ledger technology could well decide their futures. We see it as fundamental to underpinning the future entertainment ecosystem for mainstream broadcasters, video game companies, and film studios.

Consumers will ultimately decide how they receive content and which companies they support. Investors would do well to be aware of these trends and the impact it will have on existing business models.

Jawad Ashraf is the founder and investor in Terra Virtua.


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