VR/AR market: future development forecasts 2017


Analytics companies IDC and TrendForce have collected the latest data and made forecasts regarding the global market of virtual and augmented reality devices. Researchers from both organizations believe that the industry will rapidly develop in the next few years.

Expert opinion from IDC

Representatives of IDC preliminary assessed that the number of VR/AR devices sold in 2016 comprised over 10 million items. According to their forecasts, the number of sold devices will reach 76 million by 2020. VR devices will account for 61 million sold items, and AR devices – for 15 million. However experts claim that virtual reality technology will be popular in the nearest future, and augmented reality gadgets will dominate later.

Forecasts from TrendForce’s analysts

Researchers from TrendForce evaluated the VR market only, without factoring in the mobile devices. According to their data, around 2.9 million Sony PS VR, Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets were sold in 2016. They expect that sales will grow by 75% in 2017 (approximately 5.1 million items).

Experts say that the supply of VR devices is limited now due to poorly organized manufacturing process and lack of key component parts. The deficiency will be eliminated only in 2018.

Anticipated sales of virtual reality headsets in 2017:

  • Sony PS VR – around 2.5 million;
  • Oculus Rift – around 1.2 million;
  • HTC Vive – over 600 thousand devices.

TrendForce predicts that the above-mentioned gadgets together with software will raise $1.9 billion in the global market in 2016. The market volume is expected to reach $22.4 billion in 2020. For now the main income is generated by hardware, but in the future VR software will become more commercially viable.