As virtual reality (VR) becomes more pervasive in the consumer market, and adoption and awareness begin to increase significantly, a new report from Tractica finds that it is mobile VR that is leading the charge and giving many users their first taste of a new way of experiencing games and media. Tractica estimates that more than 88% of all consumer-grade VR head-mounted displays (HMDs) sold in 2016 were mobile headsets, and the firm anticipates that the mobile domination of the VR market will continue for years to come, with mobile HMDs constituting three-quarters of annual consumer-grade HMDs shipments in 2021. By that time, the market intelligence firm forecasts that the total market for mobile VR hardware and content will reach $10.9 billion worldwide.
“Mobile VR has a tremendous amount of momentum, but there is much work still to be done,” says principal analyst Mark Beccue. “VR is an extremely complex technology and there are many obstacles to a frictionless, optimized user experience.”
Beccue adds that, over time, technological breakthroughs in optics, processing efficiencies, cloud computing, software application development, and streaming, as well as increased access to higher-quality broadband, will improve and accelerate the general availability of consistently high-quality VR experiences.
“While VR for mobile is currently a less immersive experience than PC and console-based VR,” says Beccue, “the gap will narrow considerably between 2017 and 2021. There is a real possibility that mobile will become not only the choice for simpler VR experiences, but the choice for the vast majority of all VR experiences.”
Tractica’s report, “Mobile Virtual Reality”, provides a detailed analysis of market issues, technology issues, key industry players, and market sizing and forecasts for mobile VR hardware and content. Hardware forecasts include unit shipments and revenue for mobile HMDs, cameras, gamepads, and other VR-specific controllers. Content revenue forecasts are segmented into gaming and media. All market data covers the period from 2014 to 2021 and is segmented by world region. The report also includes profiles of 26 key players in the mobile VR market. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the firm’s website.