Arvindhan PA, Founder of OutReal, wants to bring VR gaming to the masses with a cloud-based platform that doesn’t depend on PCs or consoles, a world first. We’re providing the infrastructure to turn his vision into a reality. Here’s the story so far.
There was a time when the idea of a VR headset in every household seemed like science fiction. Today, it feels more like an impending reality.
In 2021, VR headset sales doubled year-over-year and it’s estimated that the VR market will generate $7 billion in revenue globally in 2023, a 50% increase over 2022’s $4.7 billion.
But as impressive as these numbers are, VR is far from ubiquitous (for context, the smartphone market is worth an eye-watering $484 billion). This is less to do with a lack of demand or interest and more to do with accessibility. While headsets are relatively cheap, the machines that power these devices are less so.
Arvindhan PA wants to address this issue. His platform, OutReal, enables high-quality VR gaming without the PC or console millstone; all users need is high-speed internet (5G or fibre broadband) and a headset and they’re good to go. And there’s no compromise on quality. Gameplay is smooth, immersive and high-resolution (2K x 2K per eye at 90HZ Speed).
Make no mistake, this is a huge leap forward for the industry and we’re excited to be part of this evolution. OutReal is a Pulsant client and we’re helping bring the platform to market through our robust, edge-ready infrastructure.
Gaming without the games console
Arvindhan first experienced VR in 2017 via Meta’s debut headset, the Oculus Rift. Although he enjoyed the experience, he immediately recognised the issue of cumbersome PCs, which at that point were physically tethered to the headsets. So, he began experimenting with Wi-Fi and quickly saw an opportunity with cloud gaming.
The idea was simple: what if, instead of purchasing a PC or console to play games, users could simply stream them over the internet via an app? Netflix, but for VR gaming. All users would need is a headset. The storage and computer power needed to run these games would be hosted in localised low-latency edge data centres.
Of course, the reality was slightly more complex. VR gaming depends on the seamless flow of data between locations and wireless networks are prone to latency issues, which can affect application performance and the end-user experience, even leading to health problems for some gamers.
Solving this problem came down to finding the right data centre. The London user market was critical to OutReal, so the search began for a facility that was local, reliable and ultra-connected.
Location, location, location
OutReal chose to co-locate in our South London data centre for several reasons:
By utilising Pulsant's edge infrastructure which enables greater scalability and connectivity, Arvindhan can launch a public version of OutReal, confident that gamers will enjoy a premium, lag-free experience.
And while our low latency, edge infrastructure platform suits OutReal’s needs today, it also provides a springboard for future growth. OutReal can add more servers with ease and target new markets across the UK by moving infrastructure into local data centres near metropolitan hubs.
Arvindhan has already seen a huge amount of interest in his platform from both investors and industry insiders. He’s in the process of integrating OutReal with online gaming platform, Steam, which will give users access to a wider range of gaming titles. He’s also in talks with game design studios eager to convert classic games into a VR format.
Innovating at the edge
We’re excited to see what OutReal does next. It’s an example of a new generation of dynamic and innovative gaming companies committed to delivering the highest standards of service and performance by bringing data and resources closer to users, at the local or network edge.
Our purpose is to help businesses thrive and grow by providing critical edge infrastructure and connectivity they need to capitalise on new and emerging innovations like 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), data analytics, electronic vehicles and VR.
We do this through platformEDGE™, a single integrated solution that brings regional data centres, low latency connectivity and distributed compute capabilities together so that businesses can apply edge computing to improve performance, drive transformation and grow at scale.