TrendForce expects the global shipments of VR devices to reach 4.65 million units in 2018, and 6 million units in 2019, a YoY growth of 29%. Oculus’s strategy of price cut has successfully boosted sales since the release of Oculus Quest at the beginning of this year.
“Sony is expected to ship 2.2 million units of PlayStation VR, as the series’ new products have not yet been released,” says TrendForce analyst Jason Tsai, “HTC’s VR shipments are expected to reach 800,000 units”. As for Oculus, it has witnessed the largest shipment growth among the three major VR makers, with momentum from Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, and Oculus Quest, which drives the company’s total shipments to 1.7 million units.
Tsai points out that Oculus Quest is the main product of the company, while Facebook will continue to provide more applications for standalone VR devices. Rather than making profits from hardware devices, Facebook would put more focus on promoting its platform and content services. Therefore, Oculus offers attractive prices to increase the penetration of standalone VR devices. Retaining its pricing strategy, Oculus has a chance to offer low-priced Oculus Rift in the future.
As for Oculus’s rivals, they have other priorities. Sony will continue to focus on console-based VR market and to develop the next-generation PlayStation. HTC will retain its market positioning of high performance and outstanding user experience. HTC may offer promotions to deal with the pressure from competitors, but boosting shipments will not be the main target for the company.
Looking back to the global VR market for 2018, Sony, Oculus, and HTC have their respective market objectives and plans, which moderated the competition between them. However, as Oculus continues its aggressive strategy to expand the market share and introduce more software and applications, competition in the global VR market may grow tense.