With everyone cooped up inside for most of 2020 we all naturally turned to binge-watching streaming services or playing videogames to keep entertained. With consumers looking for new ways to pass the time this led to an increased interest in XR, or more specifically, virtual reality (VR), as market research company Superdata’s latest report indicates.
Superdata’s figures show that VR videogame revenue increase by 25% during the course of last year, jumping from $471 million USD up to $589 million. It puts a large part of this down to Valve’s award-winning Half-Life: Alyx selling 1.9 million units in the first six months. Oculus Quest content would’ve also played a big part as Facebook revealed 10 titles had exceeded $2 million revenue.
Yet even with those positive figures they were likely hampered by the lack of headset availability which saw shipments fall 15% during the year. There was a notable lack of Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S stock at the beginning of the year, whilst the Valve Index has continually struggled to maintain stock levels.
The launch of the Oculus Quest 2 in October obviously helped the standalone category which saw the only gains with 19% growth reports Superdata. As Mark Zuckerberg noted during Facebook’s Q3 earnings call: “Pre-orders have outpaced the original Quest pre-orders by more than 5x and have surpassed our expectations.” With the Q4 earnings call expected at the end of January, it remains to be seen if the company will have any figures to share.
Superdata also notes the decline of PlayStation VR, once the front runner of the VR industry thanks to plenty of exclusives and the massive PlayStation 4 customer base. However, Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) hasn’t kept up with the rest of the industry so developers have turned to the Quest platform instead. PlayStation VR’s last notable exclusive was Marvel’s Iron Man VR. This was also in part due to the focus on PlayStation 5’s launch.
Overall, Superdata now puts the entire XR industry at $6.7 billion. Niantic Lab’s augmented reality (AR) title Pokemon GO made the top 10 free-to-play titles on mobile, achieving the fifth spot with earnings of $1.92B, growing 39% year-over-year even with COVID-19 restrictions.
As the XR industry continues to expand and become more profitable, VRFocus will keep you updated.