In its new study, Virtual Reality Industry Report: Spring 2017, market research firm Greenlight Insights forecasts total virtual reality revenues to reach $7.2 billion (€6.78bn) globally by the end of 2017, of which, head-mounted displays (HMDs) will account for $4.7 billion.
Anticipating modest growth in the short term, Greenlight Insights expects the VR industry to grow into a major global marketplace by 2021, reaching $74.8 billion in global revenues, driven in part by the increased spending in several enterprise sectors and in location-based entertainment (LBE) industry.
“We saw mixed results in the global VR industry in 2016— initial sales volume by some high-end manufacturers didn’t quite live up to the hype, while PlayStation VR, Samsung Gear VR, and low-cost headsets continued to gain traction,” said Clifton Dawson, CEO of Greenlight Insights. “There are turbulent times ahead, but our analysis points to VR achieving critical mass in many markets by 2019, building to a considerable global marketplace five years from now.”
The report, released in partnership with Road to VR, as well as contributing firms iResearch (China) and MoguraVR (Japan), includes global hardware, software and services revenue forecasts, as well as findings from a new survey of VR industry professionals. The report also offers disruptive trends to watch in 2017, such as:
“Before spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on equipment, new users are turning to LBE centres to experience VR inexpensively and more immersively than they could with an in-home system,” said Eddie Lou, China Market Analyst, Greenlight Insights. “Niche accessories such as full haptic suits, sensory simulators, and specialised controllers will find a home in LBE centres as consumers will be less inclined to purchase expensive hardware. This represents a distinct market opportunity for VR content studios and hardware vendors.”