The beginning of a new year is a time for reflections on the past and predictions for the future. In our Virtual Reality centric world, we see headlines reflecting this, “Why 2016 was not the year for VR” and the counter to that, “Why 2017 will be the year of VR”.
Facebook, Google, Samsung, Microsoft, PlayStation, to name only a few, have spent collectively billions of dollars on the research and development of VR and AR. We’re thankful for that. But the fact of the matter is this: We, the writers of this magazine, and you the reader, live in the VR world.
We try our best to keep up with what is going on in this exciting time and to share it with you. We have experienced VR firsthand and have seen the limitless potential the technology has. But here’s the catch. When I go out with my friends and try to explain a VR experience to them, blank stares all around. They have no idea what I am talking about. VR must be experienced firsthand. You must strap the headset on and immerse yourself into another world.
The average consumer has never experienced VR. We have a slight chicken and the egg conundrum. We have some incredible content creators doing some amazing things with VR, don’t get us wrong. But without the average consumer interest, we don’t have the critical mass that will take VR to the next level and beyond.
Yoni Koenig and Ilya Druznikov the Founders of Exit Reality see this disparity and have created something pretty amazing to address it. Exit Reality’s motto is, “We exist to bring the ultimate VR experience.” And they do. Featured as VR Observers #1 place to experience VR in San Francisco, Exit Reality offers two unique environments for individuals looking to experience VR.
People in San Francisco who frequent the Myriad, a collection of small shops and food vendors are familiar with the first, and perhaps Exit Reality’s best-known VR experience. Their vintage box truck. Designed and fabricated by Daphne Vega (Yoni’s wife), the trucks welcome people in with a vintage feel reminiscent of another time. Simple and purposeful signage adorn the exterior. Exit Reality is focused on promoting VR, the experience of, not the promotion of a specific manufacturer. They are advocates of the technology, not an advertising platform.
Hand bent aluminum, exposed rivets, and white wall tires provide a comforting feel of days past. A perfect juxtaposition to what waits inside. A beautifully appointed maple interior, light in color yet extremely warm. And at the center of it all, the VR headset and its accompanying CPU.
You walk through the past in order to step into the future.
Exit Reality also offers their Exit Cube. A portable turnkey VRcade. Available for short term and long term installations they will deliver an Exit Cube to your location, giving customers something new to experience and increased interaction with the business.
Offering such VR experiences as Gnomes and Goblins and theBlu by WeVr, The Brookhaven Experiment by Phosphor Games, Raw Data by Survios and many others. Exit Reality understands in introducing VR to the masses the importance of content. They deliver the correct content to the context. For example, they would not deliver The Brookhaven Experiment and all its zombie shooting glory to a meditation retreat. Aligning the messaging to an audience is critical to introducing people unfamiliar with VR to VR.
Both the truck and the cube bring strangers together in a community environment, each person going through an emotional arc, sharing their stories. A unique bond is formed when people experience something for the first time.
“After the billions in invested in technology it’s time to invest in people, who today still don’t get the basic value proposition of VR. Our mission is to create VR enthusiasts one person at a time by bringing to them the best VR experiences in the places they already frequent – it’s all about creating the best environment for trials – and we blow their minds because , when the experience it they believe it.” says Yehonatan Koenig.
Beginning January 19th through the 22nd Exit Reality will be bringing its VR experience to the Viceroy Santa Monica Showcase. This is the first time Exit Reality will be bringing its VR experience to southern California. The VR experience will be open to media and hotel guests from noon to 10 pm daily. There will be both a pop-up truck parked outside as well as a custom installation in the lounge.
Exit Reality is looking to scale, eventually bringing their unique VR experiences to every major city in the country. We’re looking forward to it. The more people who experience VR, and in turn become interested in VR the better it is for the overall adoption of an emerging technology. This is what drives a movement forward.
And on a side note, VR Observer in located in New York City. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge…..just saying.
To inquire about event rentals or long-term installations at your venue, contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or (415) 857‑4592.