The company started an open pre-sale to last till early January, 2018. Earlier VRT World has announced details of its public crowdsale to begin on February 27 and to end on March 27, 2018.
The company anticipated it will raise up to $16 mln in the token offering (which is the hard cap), with 30% of the proceeds to be used for creation and promotion of the company’s virtual reality parks, 25% to be spent on creation of the platform, SDK and upgrading technology, 18% and 15% to be allocated for content creation and marketing activity, respectively. Currently, chances are high that significant contributions from white list investors will close big part of the fundraising on pre-ICO stage.
The VRT tokens are issued in conformance with the ERC20 standard. All purchased tokens will be transferred to users’ wallets in Ethereum blockchain with closed balance in smart contract. The tokens will be sold at a price of $1 per each token. Early buyers participating in the pre-sale will be granted a 30% bonus. Investors can participate in the pre-sale via VRT World . Additional details of the project can be found in the white paper.
Virtual Reality – Time to accept the challenge
The term “Virtual Reality”, or VR has been “the talk of the town” ever since the end of the Eighties. Popular culture, sci-fi, and Hollywood gave the public a fair amount of beliefs, concepts and misconceptions, mythology and ideas associated with VR. The public was presented with a bright new world where people were living more than one life exploring alien worlds and whatever from their couch.
The “real” reality was not so bright, says Konstantin Negachev, who has been a vivid fan of computer games ever since being a child, and how, being 26 years old, has seen his dream come true as he now runs WRT World, a VR company available to produce games itself.
The hardware capable of decent rendering and presenting the VR to the human sense was not consumer–available. The “Virtual Reality Entertainment Rides” were merely computer-generated movies with a motion simulation platform, the “Virtual Reality Glasses/Helmets” had very limited commercial success being clumsy, unreliable and way too expensive for an average consumer. In other words, the VR for the public mind was an endeavor too expensive and too complicated to spend money on. The business/enterprise approach to VR used to follow the same motto: a tool too expensive and not essential to the production process.
And now everything has changed.
The hardware became commercially available for an average consumer. For example, a modern smart phone has now much bigger processing power and costs much less than a high-grade VR rendering workstation five years ago.
Let’s look at the market situation for the hardware
Over the last several years, Virtual Reality has become one of the most promising segments in the entertainment industry, and all the major technology firms are vying for a foothold in the market.
Advisories and trend watchers see a substantial increase in augmented reality and virtual reality hardware investment. For instance, according to Digi-Capital, total augmented reality and virtual reality investments on the part of VC funds and corporate entities equaled $2.3 billion in 2016, a threefold increase in comparison with 2015.
Behind this increase, lies a sound rationale, according to Digital Data Corporation, which noted global spending on AR/VR-related goods and services may grow from $11.4 billion in 2017 to almost $215 billion by 2021, with the compound annual growth rate reaching 113.2%.
In any event, the overall trend clearly points toward the growth of the virtual reality market, and video games are poised to play a major role in this expansion. This is primarily evidenced by the large number of potential users interested in these products. According to a Goldman Sachs study, the existing target audience for VR gaming in developed nations includes approximately 380 million people, split into 230 million console owners and 150 million PC gamers. After adding live events and video entertainment viewers to these figures, one can estimate the target audience for VR at over one billion users.
The best-known Head Mounted Device (HMD) manufacturers include Google, Samsung, HTC, Sony and Facebook (which owns the Oculus brand). According to The Virtual Report’s, there were around 18 million HMD owners globally at the start of 2017, with Google Cardboard accounting for more than half of these devices.
Additionally, statista.com says, almost 4.5 million HMDs were sold in the first half of 2017 alone, with Samsung, Sony, and Facebook’s Oculus Rift in the lead.
The next big issue is content and applications
The situation here is less than desirable. While technology companies are ready to satisfy growing market needs the market for VR is not growing. The reason is simple: lack of content. This is a direct consequence of the fact that developers lack adequate tools and a sufficiently broad customer base. Lack of content in turn deters users from purchasing VR headsets and equipment, creating a vicious cycle.
There is more than one way to address this issue.
First and maybe most obvious, is the HMD manufacturers sponsoring the development of content like it is done in the video game console business. Technology companies possess vast financial, technological and engineering resources, which can be attractive for developers. For the consumers though, different standards used on different devices and lack of compatibility will pose a significant problem, when content running on one device is not compatible with the other.
The second, maybe, less obvious but more convenient way is setting up an open ecosystem both for the consumers and the developers, some sort of a decentralized marketplace where a content and app developer is able to showcase and sell their products, and a consumer has a number of compatible apps and content readily available to purchase and use. Such an ecosystem should be equipped with all the necessary instruments for the developers to facilitate their work: free software development kit (SDK), application program interface (API), and, finally, a secure and reliable way to process payments to the content developers, e.g. based on the blockchain approach.
A Moscow based company, VRT World has chosen the second option, i.e. an open ecosystem approach and is now setting up a platform, where the marketplace concept and all the instruments are implemented and offered for the content developers and the content market.
The VRT World team are not new in the business, and they have a unique set of experiences. In 2015, they started working on advanced motion-capture technology that makes it possible to immediately convert any movement into VR, and in two years, they made a real breakthrough in VR games. Not only did they perfect the system, but they decided to have an operating project with an unprecedented level of interaction between users.
After years of perfecting the system, they decided to put the puzzle together
In November 2017, they launched the first VR park in Moscow, which will be followed by four more parks on a franchise basis soon. They have also signed a partnership agreement to open 30 VR parks based on VRT World’s own technology in various European cities over the next 18 months.
To maintain a high level of interest in VR parks, new game worlds and new game scenarios are needed, and so the park network will become the first customer for platform-based VR content, immediately generating economic activity on this basis. The company will also establish a fund for the same purpose, which will be used to reward pioneering developers of the platform and will amount to 5% of the money raised.
The platform will operate based on blockchain technology, and as a result will benefit from a high level of transparency and openness to all market participants. This will also facilitate a fair distribution of funds between content creators and content markets, making the product more affordable for consumers.
In order to facilitate the system and avoid exchange rates and borders, and make the system international, VRT World’s own tokens will act as a “fuel source” for the entire platform. They will be released on the Ethereum blockchain in accordance with the ERC-20 standard. VRT World Tokens will primarily be used as a payment method for all platform transactions, including the purchase, sale, and rental of VR content, as well as for various services. A smart contract with all relevant details (subject of the deal, deal type, price, time limits, etc.) will be created at the time of transaction.
After verifying contract details, the buyer will send VRT World Tokens to the address specified in the contract and will then receive a download link or confirmation of services performed. The seller will then receive the specified sum minus a small commission to cover the platform’s fees. The size of this commission will vary based on several key factors, such as the base commission rate set by the platform for each type of transaction, the buyer’s and seller’s respective ratings, and total amount of the transaction, among others.
VRT Tokens will also be used as rewards, given to platform participants for completing certain tasks such as content moderation, conflict resolution, and other functions. A VRT Token fund will be set up to provide platform participants with rewards for assisting with the platform’s development.
VRT World Tokens may also serve as payment for content storage. Since VRT’s platform will use a decentralized storage model, all its content will be stored on servers and hard drives belonging to platform users. This storage will be based on the IPFS protocol.
Lastly, VRT Tokens will be used to access our VR parks (with a 20% discount). Additionally, VRT Tokens will be the only way to provide a lump-sum payment when entering a franchise agreement for their parks. In both cases, tokens will be erased after the transaction takes place. As a result, the number of VRT Tokens in circulation will decrease immediately after the Token Sale, driving up their value.
And we are just getting started…
Over the last several months, several major players have announced their intention to enter VR and AR (augmented reality) markets. Apple is set to present a working device of its own by 2020, and there is some visible interest from broadcasting conglomerates and entertainment majors. Looking from investors’ prospective, one can expect some M&A activity and massive inflow of funds into the industry, and it is obvious that early starters shall benefit the most. VRT World looks like a promising candidate.
About VRT World
VRT World is developing a decentralized global platform for virtual reality, which will bring together developers, consumers, and investors in VR sector all across the globe. With VRT World platform, content creators, media buyers, developers, storage and service providers, and advertisers are equipped with a comprehensive set of tools, enabling them to generate, test and distribute content and ideas, as well as engage in all forms of collaboration. The company is run by an experiences team with track record of more than three years in VR sector and over 10 years of successful business in digital technologies. VRT World has its headquarters located in Moscow.