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本文摘要:When heads of state come to visit Facebook’s headquarters in Silicon Valley, Mark Zuckerberg likes to give them an Oculus Rift virtual-reality headset to try.当国家元首采访Facebook坐落于硅谷的总部时,马克扎克伯格(Mark Zuckerberg)讨厌让他们戴着上Oculus Rift虚拟现实(VR)头盔体验一番。

When heads of state come to visit Facebook’s headquarters in Silicon Valley, Mark Zuckerberg likes to give them an Oculus Rift virtual-reality headset to try.当国家元首采访Facebook坐落于硅谷的总部时,马克扎克伯格(Mark Zuckerberg)讨厌让他们戴着上Oculus Rift虚拟现实(VR)头盔体验一番。The social network’s founder has played VR ping pong with world leaders, and maybe even a shooting game, depending on what kind of leader it is, he told attendees at the Oculus Connect conference in Silicon Valley this week.这位Facebook创始人在本周于硅谷举办的Oculus Connect会议上告诉他与会者,他跟世界各地的领导人用Oculus头盔打过虚拟世界乒乓球,跟有的领导人或许还要玩游戏一盘射击游戏——各不相同是哪种类型的领导人。Addressing hundreds of VR software developers, Mr Zuckerberg recalled an incident when one prime minister was being yelled at by his wife because he refused to return to the real world and catch their flight home. 面向数百位VR软件开发者公开发表演讲时,扎克伯格回忆起一件事——曾多次有一位总理(或副首相)拒绝接受回到到真实世界中乘坐回国的班机,因此被他妻子头了。

I was told there was a dinosaur! Where is the dinosaur? the unnamed leader exclaimed, according to Mr Zuckerberg.扎克伯格说道,这位领导人(明确是谁他没透漏)当时大喊:有人告诉他我有恐龙!恐龙在哪儿呢?While it remains mainly an expensive hobby, virtual reality is no longer reserved for tech billionaires and the elite. 尽管VR相当大程度上仍然是一项便宜的嗜好,但它已仍然是科技富豪和精英人士们的专享。After decades in development, the run-up to Christmas will see a handful of VR headsets go on sale to the general public for the first time, ranging in price from under $100 to almost $1,000. 经过几十年的发展之后,一系列面向大众市场的VR头盔将在圣诞节前夕首次销售,价格从将近100美元到将近1000美元平均。

Although still far behind smartphone revenues worth more than $400bn this year, Juniper Research estimates $5bn in VR hardware sales in 2016 will grow tenfold to more than $50bn by 2021.尽管VR设备销售额今年只有50亿美元,仍远高于智能手机逾4000亿美元的收益,但据Juniper Research估算,它到2021年将不会快速增长至现在的十倍、超过逾500亿美元。The projections indicate mass market acceptance, made possible by greater affordability and a maturing of VR development that makes it easier to use and more appealing to the consumer.这些预测指出VR设备未来将会取得大众市场拒绝接受——价格更为亲民和VR研发日益成熟期(令VR设备更容易初学者,对消费者也极具吸引力)使之沦为有可能。

We’ve just crossed a threshold in terms of what the technology can do, says Jesse Schell, a video game designer who has been working on VR since the early 1990s.视频游戏设计者杰西谢尔(Jesse Schell)回应:就VR技术的构建能力而言,我们刚穿过了一道门槛。谢尔自上世纪90年代初以来仍然在钻研VR技术。He compares the state of the VR market with the debut of the Atari 800 and Apple II in the late 1970s, when personal computers first arrived in the home. 他将当前的VR市场状况比作上世纪70年代末Atari 800和苹果II(Apple II)的问世,当时个人计算机(PC)首次转入家庭。

Those things were so cool that everybody talked about them, then the prices came down and we had a massive revolution, he recalls. 他回想道:那些产品十分酷,所有人都在谈论它们,随后价格下来了,我们步入了一场大规模革命。Christmas of 2016 is like Christmas 1978 all over again.2016年圣诞节就像1978年圣诞节的重演。When Facebook bought Oculus for $2bn in 2014, Mr Zuckerberg said, no one had ever shipped a modern consumer VR headset. 扎克伯格说道,当Facebook在2014年以20亿美元并购Oculus的时候,还未曾有一副现代的面向消费者的VR头盔发售过。Now, there is a rush of devices.如今,各种VR设备争相问世。

Following the Oculus Rift’s release in March, Google launched its Daydream View headset this week and Sony’s PlayStation VR goes on sale next Thursday, timed for the holiday season. 今年3月Oculus Rift公布之后,本周谷歌(Google)公布了Daydream View头盔,索尼还将于下周四(节日季前夕)发售PlayStation VR。Silicon Valley’s top executives are convinced that this technology is on the verge of hitting the mainstream.硅谷的高管们相信,这种技术已超过转入主流的临界点。

Our industry has made more progress in the last couple of years than any of us could have really hoped for, Mr Zuckerberg said.扎克伯格回应:这个行业在过去两年里获得的变革早已多达了我们所有人的预期。However, he also acknowledges that Oculus had a bit of a slow start earlier this year, when it hit production issues.然而,他也否认,Oculus今年早些时候有些出师不利,当时这个产品的生产遇上了一些问题。

Those delays are now resolved, but they mean that the Oculus Rift may be outsold by both PlayStation VR and HTC’s Vive this year, according to IHS Markit, a research group.那些问题如今早已获得解决问题,但研究集团IHS Markit回应,那些问题意味著,Oculus Rift今年的销量可能会不如PlayStation VR和HTC的Vive。Oculus [Rift] has had a bit of a shaky start, says Piers Harding-Rolls, director of games analysis at IHS Technology. We’re still talking hundreds of thousands [of units sold] as opposed to millions.IHS Technology游戏分析主管皮尔斯哈丁-罗尔斯(Piers Harding-Rolls)回应:Oculus Rift最初进展不过于成功,我们仍在谈论数十万台(的销量数字),而非数百万台。

IHS has a more modest forecast for consumer spending on VR headsets, expecting a rise from $1.6bn, or 4m units, in 2016 to $7.9bn, with 81m devices, in 2020. IHS对VR头盔消费开支的预测更加慎重,它预计到2020年,这种开支将从2016年的16亿美元(400万台)升到79亿美元(8100万台)。Those figures include mobile VR headsets such as Samsung’s Gear VR and Google’s Daydream, which are much cheaper than the Rift or Vive because they use a smartphone for their display and computing power.那些数据将三星(Samsung)的Gear VR和谷歌的Daydream那样的移动虚拟世界头盔还包括在内,移动虚拟世界头盔比Rift和Vive低廉得多,因为它们用智能手机做到显示屏、并用于其运算能力。

Sony is pitching its $400 PlayStation VR, which works with more than 40m PlayStation 4 consoles, somewhere in between those low-cost mobile headsets and the $600 Rift, which also requires a PC costing several hundred dollars.索尼发售了可在逾4000万台PlayStation 4上用于的PlayStation VR,400美元的价位介于那些低价的移动头盔和600美元的Rift(还必须配上一台数百美元的PC才能用于)之间。I think this is really a milestone for where VR could potentially start to hit the mainstream, Andrew House, chief executive of Sony Interactive Entertainment, told the Financial Times this week.索尼对话娱乐(Sony Interactive Entertainment)的首席执行官安德鲁豪斯(Andrew House)本周向英国《金融时报》回应:我指出这知道是VR有可能踏入主流的道路上的一块里程碑。Mr House says that advance orders for PlayStation VR had been very, very positive...I think uptake of the product is going to be very good indeed.豪斯回应,PlayStation VR的预约情况十分不俗……我指出这种产品的市场反响不会十分好。

Yet he acknowledges that predicting demand for a brand new genre of product was very challenging.然而,他否认,预测一个全新产品的市场需求十分具备挑战性。



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