Key Factors Considered When Purchasing a VR Hobby Skill Training Simulator : A Consumer Perspective
Abstract: In recent years, VR and VR devices have become more popular due to advances intechnology and lower costs, making the technology more accessible to the general public. One application within VR that is expected to grow is VR hobby skill training simulators (VR HSTS), which are now accessible not only for education and companies but also to consumers. In contrast to games which are mainly played for entertainment purposes, and unlike simulators used in educational or professional settings not purchased by the practitioners themselves, VR HSTS add complexity. This is characterized by a systematic pursuit of activities meaningful for the practitioner and a social world that is formed by involved participants sharing a common interest in a specific hobby. This raises questions about the customers of VR HSTS and their purchasing behavior, where the literature has not yet covered this new and fast-developing area. As companies strive to meet customer needs and create desirable value propositions, it is crucial to understand the customers and their behavior. Through semi-structured interviews with customers of a VR HSTS, this study investigates their consumer behavior with the purpose of understanding what drives consumers to purchase a VR HSTS. By analyzing the results using thematic analysis and a theoretical framework adapted from the theory of planned behavior, the factors seen as important in the decision-making process are identified. This study concludes that the key factors considered when purchasing a VR HSTS are perceived quality of VR, perceived quality of the specific VR HSTS, what other people, who practice the same hobby but who the customers do not know, think about the VR HSTS, what people who they do know think about the product or purchase, money, ease of purchase and use. This study finds the research area of consumer behavior within VR HSTS to be of great importance in order to understand customers in a fast-developing field, where our study contributes with new insights and factors important for the customers whenmaking a VR HSTS purchase.
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