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The recent momentum created within the virtual reality (VR) sector as regards devices, especially headsets, is paving the way for a ‘flood’ of innovative VR content in 2017, says research from IBB Consulting.

In its survey of 3,199 online consumer adults in the US, 16% expressed an interest in virtual reality, three-tenths of whom said they already own VR equipment. Of consumers that own equipment, 56% paid for it versus 44% who received it free as a gift or as part of a smartphone bundle.

Regarding the places respondents said they’d use VR, just over three-quarters said they want to use it at home. When respondents were asked to choose the type of VR content they’d be most interested in experiencing, gaming was unsurprisingly the most popular with just over one-third of respondents (37%) named gaming as their top interest. Travel was second with 20%, followed by movies, TV and news (17%).

Discerning future trends, IBB also found that headset take-up rate has increased but there is considerable room for growth. It noted though that virtual reality content was now needed to maintain and increase engagement and that VR content should take into account that with so many headsets obtained for free, many are potentially low-end devices with limited functionality.

Commenting on the report, IBB senior partner focusing on mobile innovation, Jefferson Wang, said: “IBB Consulting’s research shows that more VR headsets continue to make their way to consumers, demonstrating healthy early spending. And we see good room for growth, with three-quarters of consumers interested in VR saying they’re more willing to buy VR equipment if they’re able to try it firsthand. Clearly, the VR usage environment matters for consumers.”