Virtual reality is an exciting consumer-friendly technology that has captured a lot of attention. At this year's CES show in Las Vegas Nevada, there was a massive, extensive exhibit area dedicated to virtual reality, and by all reports it didn’t disappoint. Research firms and market analysts have recognized the potential for growth in this emerging field. Virtual reality has been sort of a reality for some time, but now more than ever, the market appears to be primed for adoption, thanks to big players in the game and the right conditions.
The predictions for the market are all over the board, but the most recent comes from Grand View Research, Inc. Its report projects that the immersive virtual reality market will reach 1.88 billion dollars by the year 2020. The projection focuses on the immersive VR headset category which includes such names as the Oculus Rift, the VRTX 1, and even the Google Cardboard platforms. Referenced within the report are a number of potential uses for virtual technologies including medical, gaming, and smartphone applications.
Augmented reality helps boost the picture of projected growth to even higher numbers. The addressable market for these types of devices covers entertainment, games, and 3D films. The base of augmented reality could parallel the rise of tablets and smartphones, meaning there is a potential audience consisting of hundreds of millions of users. If history has shown us anything in the world of technology, it is filled with emerging technologies that have quickly found a consumer friendly price point and subsequent adoption. Price point and integration are two keys to the potential for explosive growth in virtual reality and augmented reality markets.
The Oculus Rift is a well-known major player, and it is driven by the deep pockets of its parent company, Facebook. Looking about at the landscape of virtual reality and augmented reality devices, a number of other entrants have viable products to offer. Google offers its attention-grabbing Glass platform (although it has yet to reemerge into the consumer market after a bit of a launch thud). The Microsoft Corporation also has a product known as the HoloLens, which will will likely leverage its popular Xbox gaming platform for integration and adoption. HTC has its VIVE headset, which has gotten rave reviews in recent news. The question of which platform or technology breaks early and dominates the market is anyone’s guess, but it is clear that the potential has many analysts projecting a win across the board.