Virtual reality hardware market – additional information
Virtual reality, which aims at producing an immersive multimedia environment and creating a sensory experience for users, is one of the fastest growing emerging technologies today. Since the technology has been able to offer more novel functionalities in recent years, the market has grown exponentially. By 2018, the total number of active virtual reality users is expected to reach 171 million. Revenue generated from virtual reality products worldwide is forecast to reach 5 billion U.S. dollars by that time.
There is a wide array of applications for virtual reality systems, but the majority of commercial activities currently focus on video games. An important device that allows users to immerse in the gaming environment is the head-mounted display – a wraparound hardware which does not allow light or images from the outside to interfere with the virtual images. The hardware market is set to grow at a rapid rate in the upcoming years, to 5 billion U.S. dollars in 2017, including the sales of head-mounted displays. Global VR device shipments are projected to reach more than 6 million units in the same year. Head-mounted displays announced to become commercially available in the near future include the HTC Vive, Project Morpheus and the Oculus Rift.