According to the August 2016 Steam hardware survey, adoption of virtual reality headsets in the US market has slowed dramatically. Instead of a runaway success this market segment looks right now more like a dead market. According to the numbers only 0.18% of the respondents are using a HTC Vive and 0.1% own an Oculus Rift. More importantly, the change from last month is actually 0% for the HTC Vive and just 0.01% for the Oculus Rift.
If this result is indicative for more than just the US, any investment in the VR market has to be viewed as very very long term. Obviously the available solutions in combination with the technology requirements for a high end PC are much less attractive than many had thought. Now we can all wait for the next players entering the market with their newest headsets and a much better feeling for what price point makes it possible to enter this market. In addition, high end graphic cards are a relatively fast moving market when it comes to adoption among gamers. While a small market to begin with, the penetration of these high end graphic cards will continue to develop relatively quickly creating an ever growing accessible market for VR headsets. For now it seems clear that VR headsets are just an accessory for these gamers and not a ‘must have’ market driver. -NH
Another aspect to this is that after all the back orders, these are the first numbers available after the products have become available and suggest that beyond the innovators that want the latest thing, there is little or no demand. In our IFA report we will have some results of a market survey that suggests that there is demand, but not much at today’s prices. (BR)