From the 90’s onwards, the implementation of virtual reality amongst professionals has matured through the identification of new uses and improvement of the hardware generating immersive experiences. This movement made the technology available to a constantly increasing range of professionals.

But who are those professionals? What are their profiles?

vr-bnb led a study based on its equipment owner database made of more than 450 professionals owning virtual reality equipment.

Four dominant profiles came out of it and allowed for a perspective on the present-day range of professional users. Our study identified that the main present-day users of professional virtual reality are engineers, of various profiles, marketing or communication professionals, researchers, and customers or users external to the company owning the equipment.

Beyond those four dominant user profiles is a diverse range of professional users such as technical operators, professors, demonstrators, designers, and more were identified as well as their corresponding use of the technology.

Professional virtual reality users

Very logically, the uses of the technology are closely related to these profiles. While engineering related uses are very broad and scattered due to the range of engineering profiles using the technology, a strong use of the technology for marketing, communication, research and design have been reported. Close to all interviewees had use cases for internal purposes, in other words a use of the technology integrated into internal processes. A smaller number, yet still a majority of them, as well had a set of use cases dedicated to external users.

What does this mean for professional virtual reality?

Three main elements can be taken from this:

  1. The use of VR already is relatively widespread with regard to the profile of professional users
  2. The wide range of present-day user profiles defines a clear basis for the upcoming growth
  3. The technology is ready for implementation amongst a significantly larger number of professionals

Even though the results share a perspective too rarely expressed during the VR buzz, it is equally clear that the technology is not mainstream amongst all professionals… yet.

Nonetheless, it has a clear potential for growth as the range of professionals using virtual reality is expected to keep increasing, the technology becoming more accessible financially and physically.