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The consumer virtual reality (VR) market continues to dominate in terms of both shipments and value chain revenue, and by 2023 the consumer VR hardware market will reach $5 billion in revenues, according to a recent report by ABI Research, a market-foresight advisory firm providing strategic guidance on the most compelling transformative technologies. VR will lead on mobile reliant devices in terms of shipments over the next five years, while standalone shipments will see the fastest growth as new devices like the Oculus Quest hit the market. VR’s consumer market success is spurring enterprise VR adoption, which is growing as use cases and associated ROI potential are becoming better understood. Gaming and media & entertainment remain the most prominent applications in VR, but more enterprise-centric use cases in hospitality, retail, and education are beginning to embrace VR.
“VR companies have the chance to expand their footprint as they mature, while enterprise customers looking into novel visualization technologies have more choice in potential partners and use cases,” says Eleftheria Kouri, research analyst with ABI Research. “ROI is becoming better understood for businesses that are reluctant to adopt VR, with proof of concept implementations cementing value for uses like employee training and situational simulation, and these proof of concepts are increasing in quantity and scope.”
Public awareness and education are key factors for accelerating VR adoption in both markets. Along with high device cost and technical limitations, lack of knowledge restricts growth. Initiatives from some organizations that allow audiences to explore and experiment with VR tools will contribute to knowledge transformation and massive adoption, presenting greater opportunity in enterprise as well as growth in existing consumer markets. Total VR hardware revenues will approach US$8.5 billion by 2023 as a result.
“There are still remnants of the early days of VR, with heavy fragmentation and scarcity of content, but this is decreasing over time,” says Eric Abbruzzese, principal analyst at ABI Research. “This fragmentation and content scarcity initially limited potential growth of the market, but the maturation of developer tools, supporting platforms, and use case breadth are shifting market dynamics slowly toward the enterprise. While VR gaming still presents an immense opportunity, simulation and training, as well as more specialized VR uses, will propel VR alongside AR in the enterprise.”