When the first virtual reality headsets went on sale in 2016, it was obvious that it would take time to build any kind of market share. Over the past 18 months, the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive have both dropped in price and added a few additional features thanks to software updates and improved compatibility.

The GPUs required to power both cards have also come down in cost, though the recent cryptocurrency boom ate some of that advantage. But recent reports have also suggested that overall sales are down sharply in 2018.

A month ago, IDC published its quarterly update on VR and AR equipment sales. At first glance, the report looks awful — sales are down 30.9 percent this year.

But as the document notes: Much of the decline occurred due to the unbundling of screenless VR headsets during the quarter. For much of 2017, vendors bundled these headsets free with the purchase of a high-end smartphone, but that practice largely came to an end by the start of 2018.

Despite a poor start to 2018, IDC anticipates the overall market will return to growth over the remainder of the year as more vendors target the commercial AR and VR markets and low-cost standalone VR headsets such as the Oculus Go make their way into stores. IDC forecasts the overall AR and VR headset market to grow to 8.9 million units in 2018, up 6% from the prior year. Read more from extremetech.com…

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