Can you see yourself popping on your HTC Vive and strolling into a virtual IKEA? Perhaps proceeding to check out some fancy Swedish furniture before pulling up your in-game Visa and buying it? Well soon you may be able to, as UK-based payment processing company WorldPay are currently developing a virtual credit card terminal for VR environments.
Currently running on the Vive, the system allows players to make certain gestures which reveal an item’s price in a bubble. They can then stare at the price tag, which will bring up payment options in the form of a virtual version of their credit/debit card. To ensure security in multiplayer environments, a user’s pin number will be selected from a bunch of randomly placed bubbles, each containing a different digit.
Market research conducted by WorldPay suggests that some countries may be more likely to use the system that others. 93% of Chinese citizens who were surveyed said they could see themselves using VR payments. This makes sense, given the tendency in China to favour free-to-play models and their heavy use of microtransactions. The UK, on the other hand, scored only 35%.
While the technology is still in the experimental phase, it’s easy to see how this could be attractive to PC developers, particularly in what is an emerging VR market. The potential for LoL and Dota 2 style business models on a platform that is already expensive to purchase could certainly be a game changer.