What can VR and AR learn from past tech revolutions? I’ve been thinking about this during recent moments of deja vu. Every time I hear “the year of VR,” I cringe in remembrance of mobile’s similar claim… every year from ’07 to present.

But beyond overblown marketing labels, there are useful historical lessons. Some of them are unfolding as we speak and others can can inform the trajectory and timing of upcoming VR and AR opportunities.

A few lessons include:

— The iPhone 1’s early “content-starved” days were followed by years of third-party innovation that built on the hardware foundation. That is what we can expect in VR’s future, though we’re currently challenged by a classic  “chicken & egg” factor.

— The most successful VR apps and games will carry the same success factors as smartphone apps. Those that apply “native thinking,” will outperform those that shoehorn legacy media into a new format. Develop to the extent of the platform’s capabilities.

— VR Arcades and theme parks are preceding VR home ownership/use.. just like video game arcades of the 70s and 80s that preceded home console ubiquity. That will represent a near-term opportunity in VR.

We go deeper in the latest ARtillry Workshop, and the presentation (slides and voiceover) can be seen below.

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Disclosure: ARtillry has no financial stake in the companies mentioned in this article, nor received payment for its production. Disclosure and ethics policy can be seen here.