Pornhub Adds Free Virtual Reality Section for Oculus, Google Cardboard by John Gaudiosi @FortuneMagazine March 23, 2016, 10:57 AM EDT E-mail Tweet Facebook Linkedin Share icons The porn industry is investing heavily in virtual reality, which is increasingly the case when new technology enters the market. The latest move to inspire more early adopters is to give away 360-degree adult entertainment—for free. Pornhub.com, which Alexa’s online traffic estimates peg as the 65th most visited site on the Internet, has launched a free virtual reality channel—a first in the porn industry. The company, which has been featured in Hollywood movies such as the Cameron Diaz comedy Sex Tape, has partnered with online adult entertainment business BaDoinkVR to offer free 360-degree trailers. BaDoinkVR CEO Todd Glider says these trailers link to BaDoinkVR.com, encouraging Pornhub users to subscribe to BaDoinkVR and then watch every unedited video in its growing library of 360-degree experiences. Founded in 2007, Pornhub has over three million videos and attracts over 60 million visitors per day. The company also is home to the largest dedicated membership base in the adult community with over four million members. “Pornhub is one of the biggest distribution channels in the world,” says Glider. “The addition of a VR category, and BaDoinkVR’s award-winning content, will trigger increased consumer uptake and inspire more companies in the space to begin offering virtual reality content. It’s a move that lifts all boats.” A recent survey by brand strategy firm Horizon Media found two-thirds of U.S. consumers are unaware virtual reality headsets even exist. Glider compares this collaboration to The New York Times’s giveaway of one million pairs of Google Cardboard as well as Coca-Cola mixing up its retail packaging so it can be folded into virtual reality glasses. “Porn is already mainstream,” insists Glider. “It’s a persistent topic of conversation in the media. This deal is most important because it broadens mainstream awareness of virtual reality. VR is still nascent tech. Innovators and early adopters have caught the wave, but this deal ushers in the majority of consumers.” Pornhub now features virtual reality videos optimized for both Android and iOS mobile devices, playable through most virtual reality headsets such as Facebook-owned Oculus Rift, Samsung Gear VR, and Google Cardboard with smartphones. Thus, to boost the launch, Pornhub is giving away 10,000 Google Cardboard prototypes. Corey Price, vice president of Pornhub, posits virtual reality is the next phase in the constantly evolving world of adult entertainment, arguing VR will provide users with an experience unlike anything they’ve seen before. “Now, our users are not only able to view our content, but be protagonists in the experience and interact with their favorite porn stars,” Price promises. In addition to this collaboration, early virtual reality adopters can also watch free, live-streamed porn through CamSoda and experience a virtual strip club, VRClubz, courtesy of VixenVR. BaDoinkVR has also partnered with Kiiroo to produce a series of instructional virtual reality sex experiences for men and women. According to Piper Jaffray analyst Travis Jakel, adult virtual reality content is forecasted to be a $1 billion business by 2025, the third biggest sector behind video games and NFL-related content. Jakel speculates 3% of virtual reality users will pay $35on average for adult content in 2016, accounting for $13 million of the total market—compared to 5% of virtual reality users spending an average of $56.66 on games, accounting for $35 million of the market, and 15% of VR users spending an average of $8.19 on movies, accounting for $15 million of the market. According to Moshe Alexenberg, director of digital insights at online engagement and traffic firm SimilarWeb, BadoinkVR’s promotion involving giving away free Cardboard to visitors who signed up last year received 304,000 visits in 2015. “We expect porn to play a big part in both high-end and cheaper VR devices,” Alexenberg predicts. More broadly, Joost van Dreunen, CEO of SuperData Research, believes greater awareness of virtual reality is going to drive success across the industry, regardless of the type of content. “If we can get past the giggling, Pornhub’s entry into this new space may, in fact, provide valuable insight on what a sustainable publishing strategy in VR could look like,” van Dreunen says.