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Virtual Reality Marketing on the Rise

The industry of games is expanding rapidly and involves more and more resources from all over the world.  Asia is keeping the leading positions in E-sports, holding more that 60 % of the market, what is equal to $374 million, leaving North America and Europe with $143 and $72 million far behind. Virtual reality marketing enters the game industry promising to make a huge difference. 

The E-sport audience is more than 134 million people and is permanently growing. Audit companies predict the global gaming market will constantly expand and till 2019 reach the point of $93 billion with the current rate of $74,2 billion. This amount is now divided as follows:

virtual reality marketing gaming
Image: Thinkmobiles

This market is rapidly growing and creates new jobs with great prospects and impressive earnings. Let’s take a look at some successful examples.

40 hours playing week – is game streamer
becoming a prestigious profession?

Earning a living with video games could sound weird 10 years ago, but not today. Game player becomes a profession, as normal as a lawyer or a doctor are, but often even better paid.

Swedish streamer PewDiePie earns up to $7,5 m a year with just playing games.

For example, the celebrity of “Let’s play” videos PewDiePie currently has 42 896 592 subscribers on his YouTube channel. PewDiePie started the real-time entertaining online game streaming just a few years ago and now his life looks like an “American dream” in action. Personal features, a hyperactive character, a little eccentric behavior and a real love for gaming have brought to 26-years old PewDiePie the fame, the high earnings and the appreciation. According to the statistics of 2015, his current income is around $7-7.5 million a year, $4 million is generated in ad sales.

Another example of success is Jeffrey Shih, also known as TrumpSC. More than 20 thousand people spend the same time as TrumpSC for watching his 6-hour educational stream every day. His channel on Twitch already has over 80 million total lookups and this number is constantly growing.

The earnings may come from subscriptions to the stream channel, sponsored contracts, and donations from fans and spectators. The advertisement is one of the biggest income sources for streamers.

3 minutes of ads display brings $200-$500 to a gamer with the audience of 30 000 viewers.

Consequently professional streamers with a huge audience, like PewDiePie or TrumpSC, earn much more on advertising.

The battle for superiority in online game streaming

The game stream channels congregate a really huge audience. The incredible popularity of such services is proved by Twitch, an online game streaming platform that became one of the most visited websites in the US, just after Netflix, Google, and Apple, and it can achieve even more.

Image: Twitch.com
Image: Twitch.com

Hitbox is the main competitor of Twitch. Hitbox.tv developers saw the main objective of a new platform in optimizing online game streaming to minimize the broadcast delay. This was reduced to 2-5 seconds compared to around 30 seconds or even more on Twitch. Despite this fact, Twitch is still more popular among gamers and attracted 442 million spectators in February 2016, while Hitbox.tv had 7.6 million visits in the same month. The audience of this streaming platforms is also quite different. Twitch has greater popularity among users from the USA though Hitbox doesn’t have a clear separation of audience identity but the highest rate of awareness gives Poland – it’s more than 35 %.

New horizons for online game streaming and virtual reality marketing

There are new platforms that are gaining traction, one of them is Hashplay, developed by an in-house team in cooperation with THINKMOBILES. It is the first platform to broadcast live and recorded game streams in 2D, 3D, and the innovative virtual reality technology.

Virtual reality marketing finds the nieche in streaming
Source: The Void

Different apps for streaming don’t give a possibility to be a part of the game for spectators. The deep immersion into VR streaming will give you a chance to feel what you have never felt before and to live through adventures that you couldn’t even dream about” –
Denis, Unity3D Teamlead at THINKMOBILES

Hashplay sees its mission in broadening the horizons of usual gaming – the users of a virtual reality application will have a chance to find themselves involved in the game. The spectator of a game stream doesn’t need to follow the view of the player – he can turn his head and watch around just like he is a part of the invented world. To create an effect of presence the developers had to trick the brain of the user, to make both eyes see different shifted pictures – this is why the user sees the game environment in 3D.

Hashplay supports both 180 and 360 view angle. To provide the best experience with the virtual reality application THINKMOBILES team used special optimization algorithms in app development like video buffering for speed-loading of content.

Hashplay is also a new platform with great benefits for virtual reality marketing. It became possible due to sponsored advertising, that provides streamers with permanent income – they earn 50 % of the cost of the ads campaign. The advertisement on Hashplay’s virtual reality application doesn’t interrupt the streaming process, but it is always visible while broadcasting, so it reaches the wide audience. THINKMOBILES developers have done their best in order to use the most attractive features and innovative trends for VR advertising presentation.

Image: Hashplay Inc.
Image: Hashplay Inc.

To record and stream the game videos users will need to download a publisher app, which will transform the game interface and customize it for VR streaming. Watching streams via the virtual reality application is already available for Android users – the beta version of Hashplay was released o

n March, 14 and now can be downloaded in Google Play Market.

How much does a VR streaming game app like Hashplay cost?

To immerse the realistic game world users don’t have to purchase expensive electronics or invest a big amount of money to upgrade their computers – Hashplay handles the low-cost VR devices, that are compatible with the most Android smartphones. You can enjoy the virtual reality gaming with Gear VR, which works with the latest Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7s, as well as with Google Cardboard, that will fit the needs of all the users that own the smart devices with Android OS up to 6 inches.

Dozens of pre-uploaded game streams in 2D, 3D and VR will be available in the bundle with the app. Therefore, the Android users can immerse the virtual reality, experience the new age online game streaming right now. At the same time, Hashplay authors remind, that the current release is not the final version of the application. All the comments and ideas of the app users will be heard and taken into consideration till the next official update.

THINKMOBILES developers are now working on the iOS version of the virtual reality application, that will be available in the App Store in mid-April. Hashplay also plans to release applications for HTC Vive, Playstation VR and Oculus Rift to cover the whole market of VR devices and meet the needs of potential users.

“THINKMOBILES brought the opportunity of fast and effective virtual reality development, which doesn’t need excessive investments. As a result of cooperation Hashplay Inc has received the app that is exactly up to quality” – Ingo Nadler, Founder & CTO at Hashplay Inc.

Based on the continuous inquiries regarding different virtual reality development projects (VR streaming and advertising platforms, museums with AR, virtual cinemas) here at THINKMOBILES we believe that the still unexploited virtual reality application market is going to change the whole tech industry. Therefore, we are investing more in R&D in this field, although we still can feel the instability around this marketplace. A lot of questions are still open. When will the market hit the critical mass? When will VR become a must do strategy for businesses and industries like military or healthcare? How much will that cost? Who becomes the Uber or Snapchat of VR?

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