In spite of reports of lower than expected sales of VR headsets, IDC keeps optimistic view on AR/VR market:
"Worldwide AR and VR headset shipments are expected to see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 108.3% over 2015-2020 forecast period, reaching 76.0 million units by 2020. The more affordable VR devices will continue to lead the market in terms of volume. However, IDC expects AR headsets to pick up momentum over the forecast as more affordable technologies and more OEMs enter the market."
"2016 has been a defining year for AR as millions of consumers were introduced to Pokemon Go and, on the commercial side, developers and businesses finally got their hands on coveted headsets like Microsoft's HoloLens," said Jitesh Ubrani senior research analyst for IDC Mobile Device Trackers. "AR may just be on track to create a shift in computing significant enough to rival the smartphone. However, the technology is still in its infancy and has a long runway ahead before reaching mass adoption."
"Augmented reality represents the larger long-term opportunity, but for the near term virtual reality will capture the lion's share of shipments and media attention," said Tom Mainelli, program VP, Devices & AR/VR. "This year we saw major VR product launches from key players such as Oculus, HTC, Sony, Samsung, and Google. In the next 12 months, we’ll see a growing number of hardware vendors enter the space with products that cover the gamut from simple screenless viewers to tethered HMDs to standalone HMDs. The AR/VR headset market promises to be an exciting space to watch."
Update: Canalys, and TrendForce too forecast a bright VR market future.