The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), the worlds largest event dedicated to videogames, starts next week in Los Angeles, California, and it’s set to be even bigger and better than ever for virtual reality (VR) fans. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA), which represents the US videogame industry and owns/manages E3, has revealed there’s going to be more exhibitors focused on VR than in 2016 as well as new figures detailing the technology’s reach into the US market.
Big names like Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) and Microsoft are set to reveal more VR and mixed reality (MR) content, but there’s going to be a increase in small exhibitors as well. ESA has announced that 126 exhibitors are involved in the VR/MR and augmented reality (AR) space – a 138 percent increase from 53 last year.
The organisation also unveiled some interesting statistics on the state of the VR industry in the US, with 63 percent of frequent players familiar with the technology and 15 percent having used it. The infographic above also highlights some interesting details on VR use, with the most common – and not too surprising – being single-player videogames, either on mobile or PC/console.
Two stats which are close to the bottom are group orientated VR, like socialising and multiplayer. While social apps like vTime and AltspaceVR have been out for sometime – with Facebook Spaces joining the field earlier this year – they still have a long way to go before widespread adoption in the VR community.
Multiplayer VR is the second most common activity for PC and console users – certainly elevated by multiplayer focused titles such as EVE: Valkyrie, Star Trek: Bridge Crew, Rec Room, Sports Bar VR, Elite Dangerous and many more – with cross-platform gameplay being an important part. But that doesn’t seem to be the case for mobile, which technically has a larger install base.
2017 will certainly look to mark a noticeable uptake in VR adoption with more and more advancements being made. SIE recently revealed PlayStation VR has passed the 1 million mark, during Google I/O the company announced a partnership with HTC on a standalone headset, Microsoft and Acer will be releasing a MR HMD with motion controllers at the end of the year, and Apple has finally taken steps into the world of VR and AR.
As ever, for all the latest VR/AR and MR news, keep reading VRFocus.