Cardi B onstage on Day 1 of Wireless Festival held at Finsbury Park, London.
ISABEL INFANTES/PA IMAGES VIA GETTY IMAGES
In a sign that times are indeed a-changin’, it has emerged that the number of people who watched Wireless Festival in virtual reality was almost double the number of people who attended in real life.
Held in London’s Finsbury Park earlier this month, Wireless Festival was attended by 130,000 people, with music fans turning up to see rappers like Cardi B, Skepta, Travis Scott and J Hus.
But some 250,000 people watched the festival live on virtual reality app MelodyVR, which works on smartphones and VR headsets like Oculus and Samsung Gear VR.
The stats suggest that VR, which has struggled to break into the mainstream, might still find an audience.
MelodyVR didn’t break down how many VR viewers watched on their phones and how many watched through a headset. VR headsets have experienced slow sales despite companies like Facebook and Samsung spending billions of dollars on developing them.
Founded in 2014 by 31-year-old Anthony Matchett, MelodyVR is designed to immerse people in large live performances. It aims to give people an audience-like experience without actually having to stand in the audience—something that’s likely to prove popular with armchair viewers who don’t enjoy the sweaty, smelly and crowded festival experience.