Virtual Reality devices to hit 14 million in sales by 2016

Virtual Reality (VR) devices will hit 14 million in unit sales by 2016, analysts have predicted.

VR is the biggest news in tech right now, with more and more companies trying to get in on the ground floor of what many believe will be the next hardware revolution.

According to research by TrendForce, the industry will see an early boom as the technology comes to market, with 14 million devices sold by 2016.

The figures also show that the amount of devices on the market will continue to grow steadily, with 38 separate headsets on sale by 2020.

The majority of the initial sales are likely going to made by existing industry players Sony's Project Morpheus, Facebook's Oculus Rift and Valve and HTC's Vive are all slated for a release in late 2015 or early 2016.

This is largely unsurprising, and TrendForce's wearable device analyst Jason Tsai echoes the popular assumption that gaming will be Virtual Reality's biggest initial draw.

"VR hardware's market positioning is clearer than smartwatches", he said. "Since VR device's strongest feature is providing users with an immersive audiovisual experience, its early application will be related to gaming."

He highlighted the ease of making VR games compared with movies or other content, as well as the large and specific niche of early adopters that gaming enjoys.

Tsai states that once virtual reality is a financially proven medium, with hardware platforms experiencing sales success, the industry will begin to grow, as more companies and consumers start investigating the technology.

Adam Shepherd

Adam Shepherd has been a technology journalist since 2015, covering everything from cloud storage and security, to smartphones and servers. Over the course of his career, he’s seen the spread of 5G, the growing ubiquity of wireless devices, and the start of the connected revolution. He’s also been to more trade shows and technology conferences than he cares to count.

Adam is an avid follower of the latest hardware innovations, and he is never happier than when tinkering with complex network configurations, or exploring a new Linux distro. He was also previously a co-host on the ITPro Podcast, where he was often found ranting about his love of strange gadgets, his disdain for Windows Mobile, and everything in between.

You can find Adam tweeting about enterprise technology (or more often bad jokes) @AdamShepherUK.