It was to be expected the virtual reality would be faced with growing pains. Even though initial expectations for 2018 were quite high, they will need to be revised. Shipments of VR units have plummeted by over 30% compared to the same period in 2017. It is an unfortunate setback, although the optimism remains in place.
Decline in VR Headset Shipments Was Expected
Over the past two years, a lot has happened in the world of virtual reality. With both the first and second generation of units coming to market, an interesting situation ensues. One would expect this to boost overall sales throughout, but that is not the case. Whereas 2017 was a pretty positive year, the situation turned around quickly in early 2018.
With VR shipments declining by just over 30%, the current trend isn’t good. Both AR and VR headsets shipments are down, but that is also partially to be expected. In 2017, a lot of units were bundled with smartphones. That initial hype has dropped off, and the bundles no longer exist at this time. It is evident that would impact shipments in a negative manner.
Additionally, availability of the second-gen units such as the Oculus Go will shake things up. This unit was released at an interesting time. Even so, it is only normal the declining interest in the Oculus Rift will have caused part of the drop-off as well. Additionally, the growing content creation for both VR and AR will boost the numbers again, as there has been a “content lull” between 2017 and 2018.
For the time being, it remains to be seen how this situation evolves Although the positive trend wouldn’t be maintained forever, it is evident the coming 12 months will need to provide some solid growth Failure to do so may spell a very troublesome future for both VR and AR. There is still plenty of reason for optimism, but the overall efforts need to be improved upon regardless.
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