Metaverse

Extended reality headset sales to grow to $20bn 2033

29th September 2022
Kiera Sowery

Virtual, augmented, and mixed reality (VR/AR/MR) devices promise to revolutionise the way we interact, acting as gateways to the metaverse. Despite these technologies already achieving limited adoption, extensive headset hardware development is required to meet the demands of becoming a ubiquitous computing platform.

The new IDTechEx report, “Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality 2023-2033: Technologies, Players, and Markets”, analyses the future of this hardware development. IDTechEx has been covering this industry since 2015, staying close to the technical and market developments, interviewing key players worldwide, attending numerous conferences and delivering multiple consulting projects: this experience is utilised to analyse the market, identify technological trends and opportunities, and forecast VR/AR/MR headset industry’s growth at a CAGR of 13% to 2033.

 

The evolving role of XR

 

VR devices replace the real environment with virtual content, whereas AR devices overlay content on top of the real world. MR-capable AR devices blur the line between the real and digital worlds, with overlaid virtual content interacting with real objects. Collectively, these technologies are referred to as eXtended Reality (XR).

 

IDTechEx’s report analyses the changing applications XR devices will see and their effects on design and hardware demands. For AR, the largest change is expected to be renewed attempts to crack the historically difficult consumer market with initial targeting by more niche devices on the route to the eventual hope of replacing the smartphone. For VR, a near-term trend will be efforts to find new consumer use-cases outside of gaming, to find growth outside of this crowded market.

 

The report contains breakdowns of the VR and AR application space today and in 2033, examining the effects of this evolution. Working from its database of technical and pricing data for the majority of XR headsets released since 2010, IDTechEx quantitively analyses the history of these trends, informing conclusions on the development of market segmentations, development path and innovation gaps in displays, optics and sensing, and acting as a key input to IDTechEx’s market forecasts.

 

Industry overview and market forecasts

 

Numerous profiles of players across the XR industry, from component manufacturers to content developers, form the bedrock of IDTechEx’s view of its landscape, alongside its attendance of conferences including Laval Virtual Europe, CES and Augmented World Expo in 2022/21. These not only enable IDTechEx’s report to offer qualitative insight into the changing status of the XR hardware market, which is seeing growing investment from major tech firms but form one of many data inputs into IDTechEx’s forecasting process.

 

These forecasts divide the XR headset market into six granular categories, predicting it to surpass $20bn by 2033. Furthermore, they forecast the development of the componentry industry, with 18 different granular categories overall, as well as the adoption of XR accessories. Discussion of the methodology behind and implications of these forecasts helps build out a comprehensive picture of the market’s development.

 

Componentry, connectivity, and computing

 

Without an understanding of the crucial componentry for XR headsets it is difficult to evaluate the path of hardware development here as a whole. As such, the report outlines the technological and industrial landscape for XR optics, displays, sensors (including for positional and eye tracking), and haptics. The implementation and consequences of new computing systems and connectivity standards in XR devices are detailed.

 

The IDTechEx report, “Virtual, Augmented and Mixed Reality 2023-2033: Technologies, Players, and Markets”, assesses the XR market in considerable detail, based on technology benchmarking, hands-on experience of major products from events, analysis of industrial data and more. The report includes multiple company profiles based on interviews with major players across the different technologies. We also develop granular 10-year market forecasts and assessments of the potential for success of the technologies covered.

 

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