In 2016, we finally got high-end virtual reality headsets from Oculus, HTC, and Sony, but it was a yellow-electric rat and the adult-film industry that made the most noise when it comes to the next generation of computing platforms.

Since most of the people who normally generate the headlines in the virtual reality and augmented reality markets are off for the holidays, we’ve decided to look back on the year. We’ve found the 10 most trafficked GamesBeat stories about the VR and AR markets in 2016. While you might expect people to care most about the new VR hardware that launched over the last 12 months, it turns that people care way more about VR porn and the augmented reality mobile game Pokémon Go.

If I learned anything from covering VR and AR in 2016, it’s that people don’t really care about it unless you’re talking about how it relates to their genitalia.

Check it out:

Immy glasses have a 135-degree field of view.10. Immy grabs patent on how to do AR/VR glasses in a natural way

Published: March 9
Author: Dean Takahashi

AR and VR headsets are usually big and bulky, something you wouldn’t want to wear outside of the house. But a startup called Immy in Troy, Michigan is working on a product that could fix that by building VR and AR technology into wearable computer that looks more like futuristic sunglasses. This is the future, and it made it into our top 10.

9. Intel unveils Project Alloy all-in-one virtual reality headset

Published: August 16
Author: Dean Takahashi

Before we get to sunglasses (or eye implants), we first need to cut the cord between the headset and the computer. Intel showed off a VR device called Project Alloy that is capable of doing high-end, positionally tracked VR without a cable in August, and I expect to see more products like that hit the market in 2017 and 2018.

8. Pokémon Go: What I’ve learned from spending more than $50 on in-game purchases

Published: July 26
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

It's like magic! Now, turn it off to save battery life.

Above: It’s like magic! Now, turn it off to save battery life.

Image Credit: Niantic

I think it’s telling that Pokémon Go, which is barely an augmented reality game, is one of the topics that dominates this list. The game qualifies because it uses your smartphone’s camera to make it look like digital pocket monsters are standing in the world with you. This feature never worked well for me, but that didn’t stop me from spending more than $50 on the game. Even if the AR tech in the game stinks, it still made me look and interact with the world around me in a way I never had before. While quality AR and VR experiences slowly catch on with consumers, the secret for now is to give them something they can understand — like catching Pikachus at the neighborhood park.

7. PlayStation VR will let you play 360-degree videos (and yes, that means porn) soon

Published: October 12
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Google wants to make Daydream easy enough for everyone.

Above: Google wants to make Daydream easy enough for everyone.

Image Credit: Google

I’m done pretending that sex isn’t the first place your mind goes to when I bring up virtual reality. When Sony launched PlayStation VR, it also debuted immersive experiences featuring Batman and giant robots. But what were people most interested in learning about the system? Whether or not it is compatible with 360-degree adult films.

 

6. App Annie: Pokémon Go makes $10 million every day without cannibalizing other games

Published: July 29
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Pokémon Go is a moneymaking behemoth. Through summer and into early fall, it was easily the top-grossing mobile game in the world. $10 million per day put it well above the competition, and the most surprising part of all of this was that it wasn’t stripping away players from games like Clash of Clans or Candy Crush Saga. Pokémon Go was instead bringing in an entirely different audience to mobile gaming.

5. Pokémon Go’s ghosts are out for the Halloween event

Published: October 25
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Pokémon Go’s metrics eventually fell back to Earth, but developer Niantic started to introduce events to the game to get players coming back more often with a Halloween celebration. This was so successful that Pokémon Go reclaimed its spot at No. 1 on the grossing charts, and now we’re getting a Christmas event as well.

4. Sprint is making an ‘exclusive’ Pokémon Go announcement on Wednesday morning

Published: December 6
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Pokémon Go was so popular that when I posted what is essentially an announcement of an announcement, it was one of our best trafficking stories for the month of December. The actual news was that Sprint stores are now PokéStops and gyms in the game, but that didn’t matter. Fans of the game were ready to speculate the crap out of this story.

3. Pornhub’s 360-degree videos now work on PlayStation VR

Published: October 19
Author: Jeffrey Grubb

Pornhub confirmed to GamesBeat that it supports PSVR, and — once again — everyone wanted to know about it.

2. ‘VR porn’ searches up 9,900% on Google since 2014

Published: June 30
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Oh, well that explains it. It seems like once people started to get the idea in their heads about the possibilities of virtual sex, the concept really caught on and led to a massive spike in interest. Clearly, this top 10 list corroborates these findings.

1. I went hands-on with PornHub’s new free ‘VR’ category

Published: March 23
Author: Jeffrey Michael Grubb

Of course, I had a hunch that people might care about VR porn, so I decided to explore it for myself. I can say that 360-degree videos — whether they are porn or something more wholesome — typically don’t work for me. In the video above, which is censored but probably still not suitable for work, the woman actually looks like a giant when you’re in a headset. And if that’s your thing, then maybe VR porn videos are for you. But, for now, I bet it’s going to weird out as many people as it excites.

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