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Fuller VR News Adoption Stymied by Cost and Slow Technology

Virtual reality was the next big thing. Until all of a sudden it wasn't. 5/12/2017 10:15 AM Eastern

Virtual reality was the next big thing. Until all of a sudden it wasn't.

Despite a great deal of hype and a handful of forward-thinking early adopters, there have been more than a few speedbumps when it comes to widespread adoption of virtual reality in news environments. That's according to a new report from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, which took an in depth look at VR journalism and where the technology is headed.

According to the report, virtual reality journalism is seen as compelling both for journalists and for news brands, though some organizations — especially publicly funded broadcasters — have held off on making a significant investment in the technology, the report said. Among those news organizations that have begun to use VR are those that have partnered with tech companies such as Google and Samsung to expand those VR operations.

Monetization remains a central challenge for news VR: no one has cracked ad- or subscription-based models for making the technology viable.

The conclusion seems to be that despite some early adopters (including The Wall Street Journal, which recently released a 360-degree video experience highlighting the life of a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre), full-fledged adoption of VR in news is still on the horizon. The report points to major technological challenges, particularly around the cost and consumer uptake of headsets. To read more, click here.

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