Full access to Entrepreneur for $5

Criticism of Facebook rains after launching advertising in virtual reality video game

A few days ago it was announced that Facebook had given the green light to show ads through Oculus Quest, a virtual reality headset developed by Oculus.

This article was translated from our Spanish edition.
This story originally appeared on Cine Premiere

By Brenda Medel

Vía Cine Premiere

Virtual reality (VR) continues to grow by leaps and bounds and the platform chaired by Mark Zuckerberg did not want to be left behind and start a new business strategy to launch advertising trials in virtual reality games. Therefore, a few days ago it was announced that Facebook had given the green light to show ads through Oculus Quest , a virtual reality viewer developed by Oculus, a division of the famous social network. The experiment began with the video game Blaston , from Resolution Games; However, this strategy has not been so profitable and the players have already shown their annoyance, so the developers of the video game have already backed off.

Days before the complaints from gamers , the objective of Oculus Quest with Blaston was the following:

“Our primary focus at Facebook Reality Labs (FRL) is to bring more people to VR, improve the consumer experience, and advance our long-term augmented reality initiatives. We are also exploring new ways for developers to generate revenue; This is a key part of ensuring that we are creating a self-sustaining platform that can support a variety of business models that unlock new types of content and audiences. It also helps us continue to make innovative AR / VR hardware more accessible to more people, "they said in an official statement .

From their social networks, the developers of Blaston revealed that the players did not agree that Facebook introduced advertising within a paid video game - not to mention that the Oculus Quest and the Oculus platform are not free. In this way, they canceled the test, although they mentioned the possibility of relocating the strategy in their content that is free.

After listening to the feedback from the players, we realize that Blaston is not the best choice for this type of advertising test . Therefore, we no longer plan to implement the test […] '. “To be clear, we realize that Blaston is not the best choice for this type of advertising test. As an alternative, we are looking to see if it is feasible to move this small temporary trial to our free game sometime in the future. "

Blaston virtual reality Facebook

Blaston , from Resolution Games / Image: Via Cine Premiere

For his part, Tommy Palm, executive director of Resolution Games, expressed the following ( via ):

“Our mission at Resolution Games has always been to work to help the industry as a whole advance virtual reality for the good of everyone involved. Sometimes that means being the first to try a few things to see what works and what doesn't, "he said. “ If VR ads become inevitable as they have been on other platforms, we want to make sure that while we have the opportunity to start over and get it right, we do . We appreciate each and every feedback along the way so that we can have a constructive conversation about this and create the best way forward.

Although it seems that Facebook is not going to decline in the face of this first failure, certain analysts such as Richard Windsor, of Radio Free Mobile, declared ( via the BBC ) that Mark Zuckerberg and company should rethink this business model, before abandoning it completely and declaring it a resounding failure.

" I think Facebook will quickly put an end to these advertising experiments because the last thing it needs to do now is infuriate its user base just as the momentum begins to take shape ," he said. "Facebook has a great opportunity with this platform, and it makes more sense not to give in and seek to monetize it more effectively once it has truly established itself as a leader in the virtual reality market."

Ultimately, opening up new revenue streams for developers will help us unlock new types of content on the Oculus platform and deliver products at affordable prices for the consumer. In-app ads are just one of the things we're exploring to help with this, ”a Facebook spokesperson finally said (via TechCrunch ).