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In June, when Apple announced its XR headset, the Vision Pro, it took the internet by storm, generating an endless stream of coverage and early reviews praising its capabilities. Similarly, Meta's announcement of the Quest Pro last year also shone a spotlight on the world of VR and all of its potential. Broadly, the industry has spent the last two years making VR gaming more exciting, more immersive, and early adopters who have been around since the release of the first Quest in 2019 can attest to how far we've come.
Yet, despite all the hype, the industry continues to miss the mass VR adoption many expected by now, and IDC even showed a 20.9% decline in VR sales in 2022. On top of this, executives at Meta found that owners often use their headsets for only a few weeks, unveiling a clear engagement problem.
Developers continue to place their faith in a "if you build it, they will come" approach. But the growing gap between hype and adoption is perhaps the biggest indicator that the industry needs to reexamine its approach in order to see widespread adoption.
Here are four areas that I believe will expand the market and bring broader adoption to life, setting us back on track for VR revenue to surpass $28.89 billion by 2026.
As the old saying goes: "If you can't measure it, you can't manage it!"
One of the biggest challenges developers face is an absence of data. Meta, Sony, Apple, and other major headset manufacturers must prioritize providing game developers with comprehensive analytics on their users, including accurate demographic information as well as engagement and retention metric benchmarking.
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