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Abstract

With the development of new technologies, virtual reality (VR) is emerging as a new consumer marketing platform. Yet, only a few studies have investigated VR in the consumption context. The current research explores how experiencing a product through VR influences consumer attitude and purchase intention for the product. Although assessing products in real life is believed to be more diagnostic than that through VR, the present research revealed that experiencing a product through VR could lead to a more positive attitude toward and higher purchase intention for the product. We also demonstrated that “enjoyment” has a mediating effect while evaluating the product through VR.
To compare product experience through VR to that in real life, we employed the HTC Vive VR system to implement a VR environment. In the VR condition, participants evaluated plastic building blocks using a VR headset and a motion controller; and in the real life (reality) condition, they evaluted plastic building blocks printed using a 3D printer to make them look exactly the same as the blocks used in the VR condition. Finally, implications and suggestions are discussed.

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