Thursday, September 6th 2018

IDC - Despite Sharp Decline in VR Headset Shipments in Q2 2018, Market Outlook Remains Positive

Worldwide shipments of virtual reality (VR) headsets were down 33.7% year over year in the second quarter of 2018 (2Q18), according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Augmented and Virtual Reality Headset Tracker. IDC expects this to be a temporary setback as the VR market finds its legs. The arrival of new products, such as the Oculus Go and HTC Vive Pro, and new brands, combined with the need for greater headset fidelity all point to a positive outlook for the quarters ahead.

Screenless viewers brought a lot of attention to VR in the early days as the entire market was artificially propped up by brands like Samsung, Alcatel, and Google that bundled the headsets with smartphones. However, since then, the screenless viewer category has declined substantially, shrinking from 1 million headsets in 2Q17 to 409,000 in 2Q18. This category was the largest contributor to the decline in shipments for the overall VR headset market.
Tethered VR headsets declined 37.3% in 2Q18 largely because major brands like Oculus and Sony were unable to maintain the momentum established during a period of price reductions in 2Q17. As a result, the two brands managed to ship 102,000 and 93,000 headsets respectively in 2Q18. The category leader, HTC, shipped close to 111,000 headsets (excluding the standalone Vive Focus) thanks to the growing popularity of the Viveport subscription service as well as the launch of the Pro headset.

Standalone VR headsets grew 417.7% during the quarter, largely due to the global availability of the Oculus Go/Xiaomi Mi VR, which managed to ship 212,000 headsets.

While the consumer side of the VR headset market remains the focus of attention, the commercial side has seen pilots and large- scale deployments gaining traction. In 2Q18, roughly 20% of VR headsets were destined for the commercial sector, up from 14% in 2Q17. Along with the increase in share, average selling prices (ASPs) have also increased from $333 to $442 during the same period.
"One of the major issues with the VR market is that consumers still find it difficult to try a VR headset," said Jitesh Ubrani senior research analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. "This is where the commercial market has an opportunity to shine. HTC's recent partnership with Dave & Busters or Oculus' work with schools around the world stand to play an important role in educating and enticing consumers to use VR."

"In a market where mainstream VR content is still lacking, a growing number of vendors are looking to commercial as a way to build their business while they wait for the consumers to catch up," said Tom Mainelli, program vice president, Devices and Augmented and Virtual Reality at IDC. "These vendors are moving beyond entertainment-focused B2C deployments to real-world training scenarios in companies of all sizes, all over the world. IDC expects commercial buyers to represent an increasingly important percentage of the market going forward."
Add your own comment

8 Comments on IDC - Despite Sharp Decline in VR Headset Shipments in Q2 2018, Market Outlook Remains Positive

#1
r9
Not enough games to justify buying VR set for the customer and not enough VR headsets around to justify making games for it from developer's stand point.
Catch 22 right there.
Posted on Reply
#2
Rowander
It's hard to bring VR into mainstream adoption. There are many hurdles currently: lack of quality on the mobile headsets, screen door effect, bulky cables and expensive setups for the tethered headsets... and a general lack of meaningful software for both of them. It's a market that needs time to evolve. Nobody can deny the fact that most of the people that get to try tethered headsets, end up fascinated by them. And early adopters of tethered headsets are all in thanks to a small number of incredibly good games.

VR is -undeniably- here to stay, but mass adoption is still a long way down the road.
Posted on Reply
#3
xorbe
Maybe if Vive pro starter kit wasn't permanently out of stock, they could sell some.
Posted on Reply
#4
RejZoR
Anyone remembers that time when I said VR will come and go just like it has in the past? And everyone said I know nothing because I never tried how stupid it is. Of course everyone is saying "it's looking positive" because they dumped millions into this failed thing and they don't want to lose more money than they already will because of it. It's hilarious actually.

They could start with cheap "immersion headsets" that would literally only be cheap addons for mouse and keyboard so you only see ingame world and no room and monitor around it. Better models would have head tracking for mouse look without having to move mouse to perform looking around. Both could be done with no or minimal changes to the games. Even I'd buy that probably. Proper stereoscopic 3D with preferably very high refresh rate and nothing else. I wouldn't even ask for a head tracking...
Posted on Reply
#5
Mussels
Moderprator
We need a new batch of VR headsets to kickstart it again
i've got a HP WMR headset and everyone i know thats used it says the headsets a hell of a lot nicer to use than the vive, they just dont like the controllers as much


we need a new gen of headsets that match/beat the existing leaders like the vive, but keep the weight and complexity down like the WMR headsets do (one cord, lightweight) - that new connector the RTX 20x0 cards use should kickstart that revolution
Posted on Reply
#6
Vayra86
RejZoR, post: 3899123, member: 1515"
Anyone remembers that time when I said VR will come and go just like it has in the past? And everyone said I know nothing because I never tried how stupid it is. Of course everyone is saying "it's looking positive" because they dumped millions into this failed thing and they don't want to lose more money than they already will because of it. It's hilarious actually.

They could start with cheap "immersion headsets" that would literally only be cheap addons for mouse and keyboard so you only see ingame world and no room and monitor around it. Better models would have head tracking for mouse look without having to move mouse to perform looking around. Both could be done with no or minimal changes to the games. Even I'd buy that probably. Proper stereoscopic 3D with preferably very high refresh rate and nothing else. I wouldn't even ask for a head tracking...
Yup I was another one of those. VR will never take off for consumer space. It just doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Its a niche within a niche really.
Posted on Reply
#7
RejZoR
If they invested into cheaper VR headsets that work with all games in existence just for the sake of immersion and tons of gamers would grab them like hot cakes. I know I would, because nothing kills immersion like looking at a rectangular picture of a game from a distance.

I mean, just imagine playing Deus Ex, System Shock 2, Resident Evil Biohazard, Half Life or FEAR in first person where ONLY thing you see in your field of view is ingame world and items directly in front of you like you're actually in a game. Or even racing games like Need for Speed. Even without ANY head tracking or other gimmicks, just 3D stereoscopic view or regular display, but up on your face. It would work with basically all games or with minimal changes. Walking around, swinging with those handheld things and tripping over yourself is fun for half an hour, but for long time gaming, it's useless. And need specifically coded games. Every idiot knows that's a commercial death for a product if only fraction of consumers can afford and use it.

And when ppl are accustomed to wearing headsets a lot, adding features to them and offering better models would bring us the actual VR evolution.
Posted on Reply
#8
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
RejZoR, post: 3899123, member: 1515"
Anyone remembers that time when I said VR will come and go just like it has in the past? And everyone said I know nothing because I never tried how stupid it is. Of course everyone is saying "it's looking positive" because they dumped millions into this failed thing and they don't want to lose more money than they already will because of it. It's hilarious actually.
I said you were wrong then and I say it again, but not because you've never tried it but because technology improves. Smartphones existed long before the iPhone, but they were simply not as nice to use as that was (although I actually miss Windows Mobile for some probably perverted reason). The last VR craze was in the early 90's iirc; the computing landscape is nothing like back then. I've never said it will happen soon, but VR/AR will be a thing eventually. Some people say it's similar to 3D, but that just isn't true. 3D never promised entirely new ways to manipulate or percieve data, VR does. It's one of those fields where it's diffocult to forsee what will happen because it's so broad.

RejZoR, post: 3899371, member: 1515"
If they invested into cheaper VR headsets that work with all games in existence just for the sake of immersion and tons of gamers would grab them like hot cakes. I know I would, because nothing kills immersion like looking at a rectangular picture of a game from a distance.

I mean, just imagine playing Deus Ex, System Shock 2, Resident Evil Biohazard, Half Life or FEAR in first person where ONLY thing you see in your field of view is ingame world and items directly in front of you like you're actually in a game. Or even racing games like Need for Speed. Even without ANY head tracking or other gimmicks, just 3D stereoscopic view or regular display, but up on your face. It would work with basically all games or with minimal changes. Walking around, swinging with those handheld things and tripping over yourself is fun for half an hour, but for long time gaming, it's useless. And need specifically coded games. Every idiot knows that's a commercial death for a product if only fraction of consumers can afford and use it.

And when ppl are accustomed to wearing headsets a lot, adding features to them and offering better models would bring us the actual VR evolution.
Here even you say it'd be a good thing if implemented to your specifications. And what you want is a good idea, but I doubt it'll ever be made.


Personally I really want Valve to make Half Life 3, and make it a VR exclusive. That would be the killer app of the century.
Posted on Reply