Death of VR 'Greatly Exaggerated' Says HTC, Vive Production Ramping Up

The company took the time to address a report on the steep drop in Vive sales.

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Virtual reality is a few steps away from being a mass-consumed piece of technology, but some analysts and journalists have started humming a tune with "dying VR" in the lyrics. HTC isn't hearing it. "News of the so-called death of VR comes once a year and is greatly exaggerated," the team says. Further, the team dug right into analyst data and an article from Digital Trends while breaking down a handful of reasons VR is doing just fine.

On analyst information being shared, the Vive team had four specific points highlighted in a blog post:

  • The start of “consumer VR” was driven primarily by mobile phone viewers like GearVR and Google Cardboard. As these have become less enticing (i.e. the VR experience isn’t living up to consumer expectations), those units that were largely used as promotional devices for phone launches have dropped off.
  • Premium VR has solidified and ramped up over time, yet the major players have not released sales figures to substantiate the market momentum (read on for a key figure we are releasing today).
  • The overall VR experience continues to improve with the enhanced resolution and comfort of the HTC VIVE Pro, more titles, more accessories, and soon, less cables. Yet, the analysts aren’t predicting a watershed moment based on these improvements.
  • Businesses are ramping up VR investment in a big way, especially in the location-based entertainment and training industries. These numbers don’t hit consumer forecasts, and therefore, are not included in the reports. 

On the claims that sales have tapered off a great deal, the team points out that it's because HTC sold out of Vives. "For a consumer electronic product in its third calendar year, this continued trajectory is nearly unheard of," they added. "Don’t worry, though: we are ramping up production of the original VIVE and units will continue to roll out to online and retail over the coming weeks." Additional information, like a revenue market share breakdown for Q1 2018, can be found in on the website.

There are a wealth of factors that point toward the success of VR and the many investments into the technology across various industries at least hint that the potential is recognized. Creators like Bethesda's Todd Howard, who believes VR will blossom in its third generation, focus on specific points of impact for VR. The fact is, immersive tech has cast a wide net and we'll just have to continue to watch how things unfold. As far as what may be a key step for interactive VR's evolution, I'd suggest taking a look at what Valve is working on. Stay tuned to Shacknews for more updates.

News Editor

Charles Singletary Jr keeps the updates flowing as the News Editor, breaking stories while investigating the biggest topics in gaming and technology. He's pretty active on Twitter, so feel free to reach out to him @The_CSJR. Got a hot tip? Email him at Charles.Singletary@Shacknews.com.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    July 27, 2018 11:20 AM

    Charles Singletary posted a new article, Death of VR 'Greatly Exaggerated' Says HTC, Vive Production Ramping Up

    • reply
      July 27, 2018 12:06 PM

      VR may not be dying, but it's only because the major players are losing their shirts trying to keep it alive.

      How much of that 2 billion Facebook spent on Oculus do you think they've made back?

    • reply
      July 27, 2018 4:47 PM

      Its needs to be cheaper... it also needs a large space requirement. So yea :/ it is still a gimmick for now.

      • reply
        July 27, 2018 9:56 PM

        I don't want cheaper - I want wireless and better screens and foveated rendering.

        Currently I am desperately holding off for a next Gen VR, or at least one that's using the new VirtualLink cable: USB 3 and HDMI and power over a single TypeC cable.