clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Why VR is suddenly cool again after the terrible gadgets of the 1990s

New, 23 comments

Living in virtual insanity

If you buy something from a Verge link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

I won't forget my childhood disappointment with virtual reality. For a little boy obsessed with video games, VR represented a spectacular not-so-distant future in which I'd experience professional football, dragon hunting, zombie killing, and countless other fantasies as if they were real life. I never had the $15 required to test the humongous virtual reality machine at the local theme park, and I was infuriate by Nintendo's cruddy, bright red Virtual Boy, which I rented for some unholy price from the local Blockbuster.

Recently, VR's made a striking comeback. Last year, Facebook acquired Oculus, the frontrunner in VR hardware, for $2 billion. Since, we've seen aggressive movement in the industry from Samsung, Sony, and Valve, to name only a few of the companies that see potential in VR headsets.

How has VR risen from the dead? On this week's episode of What's Tech?, The Verge's VR expert Adi Robertson explains the history of the VR and what circumstances led to the crop of VR projects in development at many of the world's biggest tech companies.

Subscribe to What's Tech? on iTunes, listen on SoundCloud, or subscribe via RSS. And be sure to follow us on Twitter.