Technology | Media | Telecommunications

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Virtual Worlds Deliver Escape from Reality

Using research sessions conducted in Boston and London, Strategy Analytics has explored key drivers and motivations likely to expand the adoption of virtual worlds for a wide range of applications.

Over 70 percent of participants viewing Second Life for the first time perceive virtual worlds as a great opportunity for escape experiences. Over 75 percent believe virtual worlds are a great way to get an experience of a place.

"Virtual worlds are perceived to provide aspects of an experience that a wide range of consumers find compelling, and that aren't available through normal viewing experiences on the Web," said Harvey Cohen, President of Strategy Analytics.

"We are actively researching responses from potential users of virtual worlds in order to understand the likely response of current Web users to the new virtual world experience across a range of entertainment, information, socializing, shopping and collaborative applications."

In the new Strategy Analytics report, "Seven Emerging Truths that Will Drive Future Adoption of Virtual Worlds," respondents were asked to identify the relative strengths and weaknesses of virtual worlds compared with current Web activities by using Second Life.

Over 70 percent of respondents believe that the Web is a superior environment for activities focused on getting information and nearly 60 percent believe the Web is still a better place for focused shopping experiences.

"Virtual worlds, like Second Life are unsurpassed at creating an immersive experience that holds attention for entertaining and education. They are not yet the most efficient environment for straightforward transactional experiences like shopping or information search and retrieval," said Barry Gilbert, Vice President and Director of Virtual Worlds research.