With Sony Corp.’s (NASDAQ: SNE) recent confirmation on the price point and release time-frame for PlayStation VR, various research firms have began forecasting how well Sony’s virtual reality headset is going to do by the end of the year.
According to Head of Games Research at HIS Screen Digest, Piers Harding-Rolls believes that Sony should be able to comfortably sell over 1.6 million PlayStation VR units around the globe this year. Addressing investors, he further stated that doing so would allow Sony to grab on to a massive 64 percent of the virtual reality market. This would leave competition, such as Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, scrambling for their share in the remaining 36 percent.
Hardin-Rolls took into account the massive response that the device has gotten through early pre-orders, and added that the popularity is because of PlayStation 4’s availability. Unlike other VR headsets, PlayStation VR is a “ready-to-go” solution based on Sony’s console. There’s no additional beefy investment, such as the need for a $1000 PC system.
In addition to that, the $399.99 price tag of the console makes it almost assured that the millions owning a PlayStation 4 are more likely to side with PlayStation VR, rather than spend almost twice (or more) to reach out to other VR headsets in the market. The report further stated that PlayStation 4 is expected to cross 53 million units following the holiday season, all of which will have a direct impact on the sales of PlayStation VR.
However, the forecast of PlayStation VR selling over 1.6 million units is largely dependent on how well Sony manages its supply chain. The device is already sold out at numerous retailers, leaving thousands more waiting in line for the next wave of pre-orders. This should continue throughout the year and into 2017. Sony will be hit by supply constraints (Amazon UK got sold out of its PlayStation VR stock within only 10 minutes) and it should immediately start planning workarounds.
More than 200 developers are currently working on content for Sony’s virtual reality headset. According to the company, that translates into around 160 different projects in development. It’s unknown just how many of those will be standing alongside the headset as launch titles. Some of the games announced so far include Star Wars: Battlefront, Until Dawn: Rush of Blood, EVE: Valkyrie, Rez Infinite, Wayward Sky, Rigs: Mechanized Combat League – the list keeps on growing with each month.