How Staying Home Became the New Going Out
Changing trends, circumstances, and technologies have led to staying home rather than going out becoming a viable entertainment and social option for people all over the world. With a fast enough Wi-Fi or mobile data connection, there’s no need to venture forth in order to watch movies or live concerts, chat with friends, or even shop – you can do all of that from your own sofa.
Smart TVs, smartphones, tablets, laptops, PCs, and handheld gaming devices have all developed to such a standard that people often feel happier staying in and using their own tech rather than traveling to a concert, cinema, or shopping center. The addition of AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality) elements to many games and apps has added an extra level of immersion and it looks like XR (extended reality) is only set to get more impressive as time goes by.
At-home entertainment and socializing options can also be more accessible for a whole host of reasons; for example, aspects like cost, distance, travel time, health, and scheduling can all be addressed through online-only alternatives.
So, what do all these changes and developments look like in a real-life scenario? Let’s delve into the different ways in which you can enjoy the world of entertainment, fashion, and technology without even leaving your house.
Gone are the days when online shopping meant navigating through pages and pages of poorly photographed items with a clunky navigation system and no secure payment options. In the 2020s, shopping online can take many different forms. For example, virtual try-on options at clothes retailers mean that customers can still ‘try before they buy’, even when shopping from an app on their phone. XR also allows customers searching for the perfect sofa, rug, or artwork to superimpose the item into their own home before deciding whether or not they want to take the plunge and purchase. Tools such as these lead to higher customer satisfaction, fewer refunds or returns, and increased brand loyalty. It also means fewer queues for the fitting room, no chance of getting stuck inside a dress, and there’s often the option for a tailored experience complete with a personal shopper on hand to offer advice.
Zoom parties might have spent a very short moment in the spotlight in 2020, but the idea of gathering together with friends online has stayed. When people have different schedules or live in different parts of the world, it can be hard to physically get together and maintain those relationships. This is where hosting a virtual games night or watching synced-up movies together has come in. There are many different options for hosting your own party from home, whether you fancy playing poker, Monopoly or Fortnite; plenty of games providers have made the whole process easier with custom software or options within the gameplay itself. Alternatively, there’s often a button on streaming platforms like Disney+ called GroupWatch, or something similar, which means that everybody in your group can watch together without worrying about starting the film at the exact same moment.
It might be hard to imagine that sitting at home could come anywhere close to the real life experience of being at a concert – and you’d be right. The two options are different, yes, but they are equally enjoyable as they provide different pluses and minuses. Very successful artists such as Lil Nas X, Ariana Grande, and Travis Scott have performed inside the virtual worlds of games like Roblox and Fortnite to great acclaim – and their fans loved every second of it. Virtual concerts still provide the exclusivity of being involved in a live, one-off event with your favorite artist, but there’s no travel time, the weather doesn’t matter, and there’s little chance you’ll lose your phone or have someone tread on your foot. At the moment, prices for these events are still variable, but they are often much more affordable than forking out for a stadium tour or festival.