Disney Is Consolidating Its VR Apps: Here's Why That Matters

There are a couple of obstacles standing in the way of virtual reality’s complete domination. First is the commitment to the activity. One of the major drawbacks to 3D, besides the prohibitive initial pricetag, is that it’s a very active viewing experience. If you want to watch a 3D movie, you have to don goggles and forget about looking at Twitter. That’s fine for a movie theater, but it’s a little much to attempt to Netflix and chill with huge doofy glasses on.

The second major obstacle is price point, but any sufficiently popular experience will see a massive and corresponding price drop as popular demand pushes innovation. Smartphones are now ubiquitous and low-cost with a contract. High definition TVs are now both low-cost and mostly wireless. Pornography is functionally free. You get the idea.

Were you to get a VR headset and decide to use it, you’d find that the content is frustratingly hard to find. There's a lot of great stuff, but the hunt can be frustrating. Disney is looking to solve that issue with a new VR app for Steam, according to Engadget. The app will feature all the Disney experiences, including for Star Wars, The Avengers, and The Jungle Book, in a single place. The app itself is free and works with both the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. (Though the Star Wars: Trials on Tatooine won’t be available on the app, it is reportedly coming soon to the HTC Vive.)

Disney is a relatively early player in the VR world, especially significant as they pivot away from games development. Though they seem to so far be promoting mainly current content, there are so many canonical characters we'd like to see. A non-exhaustive list would include Elsa from Frozen, Buzz and Woody in Toy Story, a trip into the world of The Incredibles, some kind of Mickey-and-Goofy original animation experience, and of course, the classic princesses.

The obvious consequence here is that youth-focused VR content means that kids will make the Rift or Vive the new must-have accessory. That type of marketing worked for Furby and a host of other gadgets and toys, though it seems to have died off a bit in the age of the smartphones and apps.

However, now that we have all these experiences and porn available via VR, there’s really nothing standing in the way of its world domination.


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