Since the appearance of the term in the 1980s, VR has touched many aspects of life. Today, this tech is entering into the era of wider business use, in education, tourism, healthcare, entertainment, and many other areas. Virtual reality represents a simulated experience that reflects the real world. That’s why we compiled these virtual reality statistics to give you a better grasp of the entire industry, and a solid overview of the adoption rates. While you might think that most of the VR use falls into gaming and entertainment, you might be surprised to see how much it has expanded everywhere. Let’s dive in!
Virtual Reality Statistics (Editor’s Choice)
- Poor user experience is the main obstacle for VR adoption according to 26% of businesses.
- 171 million people worldwide are using VR in some form today.
- In 2020, the VR market was estimated to have reached $6.1 billion.
- Approximately 5.5 million units of AR and VR devices were set to be shipped in 2020.
- China is leading the list of the biggest investors in VR, with $5.8 billion spending.
- The virtual reality gaming market size is projected to reach $92.31 billion by 2027.
- By 2030, VR and AR might impact up to 23 million jobs.
- Virtual reality together with augmented reality could boost the global economy by $1.9 trillion by 2030.
General Statistics on Virtual Reality
1. About 55% of users are satisfied with VR.
It seems that VR popularity has a lot to do with the satisfaction it delivers to consumers. More than half of the respondents in a recent survey claim they were moderately or extremely happy with the VR. Those who haven’t used VR, however, have a low motivation for using it, with 59% saying they are just not interested.
2. The number of VR startups has increased by 14%, in less than a year.
A significant portion of this rise, seen in 2020, is courtesy of COVID-19. Virtual reality business stats show that with the pandemic forcing people to socialize, study and work from home, companies have utilized the technology to replace in-person interactions where feasible.
3. Roughly 75% of Forbes’ “World’s Most Valuable Brands” are using either AR or VR.
Giants like Facebook, Google, Amazon, Intel, Apple, Sony, and Microsoft are all trying to overtake the VR market at this early phase of adoption. Facebook alone has more than 400 people focusing on VR, while 230 other companies also develop VR software and hardware. The main purpose of using VR is to deliver an interactive 360-degree experience to customers.
4. Outside of gaming and entertainment, the sector with the highest anticipated disruption by VR/AR is healthcare, with 38%.
Healthcare and education with 28% are the two segments most likely to experience AR/VR disruption, virtual reality statistics suggest. Next on the list, we have workforce development with 24%, manufacturing with 21%, automotive with 19%, marketing and logistics (each with 16%), retail with 15%, and military with 13%.
5. Over half of the users who have tried VR have experienced motion sickness.
Motion sickness stands as a huge obstacle in the way of VR progress and faster adoption. With around 57.8% of people in total claiming they have experienced it at least sometimes, it’s a big factor to consider. Out of the total, only 13.7% experience it frequently, while 19.1% feel VR motion sickness only sometimes. Lastly, 24.9% go through it rarely. On the flip side, 42.2% of people claim to have never experienced it.
6. Women are more prone to VR sickness than men.
Compared to 7.2% of men, 22.6% of women feel VR sickness frequently. VR motion sickness statistics further show that 22.6% of women experience it sometimes, as opposed to 13.8% of men. For 29% of men and 20.2% of women, it happens rarely. Finally, 50% of men have never gone through VR sickness vs. 34.7% of women.
7. By 2020, 43.7 million people were projected to be using augmented reality for social networks at least once a month.
The number of AR users in social media forecast for 2020 represents 20.8% of total users, according to the virtual reality social media stats. Snapchat is the main platform leading this AR revolution, using a lot of machine learning models and Local Lenses. Similarly, Facebook is releasing AR advertising, followed by Instagram with its try-on features.
8. The lack of content offerings is the main obstacle for VR adoption, according to 27% of organizations surveyed.
What is slowing the VR adoption rate down is also user experience, according to 19% of organizations, which shares the second spot with business and consumer reluctance (also 19%). Regulation and legal risks come in next with 12% followed by the cost to consumers with 11%. Finally, financing and investment hold back 9% of organizations.
9. VR training reduces the risk of injury in the workplace by 43%, virtual reality training statistics show.
High-risk workplace dangers could be mitigated through virtual reality training. And not just that. VR training could help enhance the employee’s competencies. For reference, 39% of larger companies use VR to train their employees in a simulated environment. That further translates into higher retention rates of employees. For those trained using VR, the retention rates are 75% as opposed to 10% of those who receive traditional training.
(Chaos Theory Games)
Virtual Reality Usage Statistics
10. Almost one in five American adults has used or is using VR.
According to the recent report, 19% of adult consumers in the US were VR users at some point. This represents a 16% increase compared to 2019. It’s far more significant to mention the fact that these consumers are using it often. In fact, 31% said they used it at least monthly.
11. There are 171 million people worldwide using VR in some form today.
According to virtual reality user statistics, the number of people using this tech has been on the fast track since 2015. Back then, there were only around 6,700 users. The figure jumped to 43,000 in 2016. Further, out of the total number of users today, only 16,000 are innovators and hardcore gamers, the vast majority being early adopters.
12. Those aged 16-34 are more likely to use virtual reality.
If we take a deep dive into VR demographics, we notice that out of those between 16 and 24 years old, 34% were or still are users. In the group of 25-34-year-olds, VR users account for 35%. Next, in the age group 35-44 years, 26% of people have used VR. Out of those 45 to 54 years old, only 12% have explored this technology. Finally, only 6% of those over 55 years old have come into contact with it.
VR Market Statistics
13. The VR market is estimated to reach $20.9 billion by 2025.
The expansion of VR devices in India and China has been driving the virtual reality market growth. The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 27.9% between 2020 and 2025.
(Markets and Markets)
14. Approximately 5.5 million units of AR and VR devices were supposed to be shipped globally in 2020.
Today, customers own 26 million AR/VR devices. The number estimated for shipping in 2020 was set to double to 11 million in 2021, according to virtual reality growth statistics. Next, by 2025, it’s forecast to reach 43.5 million, marking an eight-fold increase from 2020.
15. Sony accounts for 43% of the total VR device shipments.
Besides the software market that is evolving into a billion-dollar worth business, the VR headset market share is getting bigger every year. Some of the main players out there, aside from Sony, are Facebook’s Oculus with 19.4% market share and HTC with 12.9%.
16. The consumer application segment accounts for 54.7% of the VR market.
New product launches, such as head-mounted displays (HMD) and VR headset sales, tend to be what's driving the VR market forward. The HMD segment in particular is set to register a 38.6% CAGR between 2020 and 2025.
(Markets and Markets)
17. VR for training is set to receive $4.1 billion in investments in 2024.
Commercial applications of VR are projected to attract the bulk of investments going forward. Virtual reality stats show that VR for industrial maintenance is set to obtain $4.1 billion in investments, followed by retail showcasing with approximately $2.7 billion.
18. China is leading the list of the biggest investors in VR, with $5.8 billion spent on this tech in 2020.
The VR industry receives financing from many countries, however, several are at the top of their game. First is, of course, China at the 30.8% share of the global investments in this segment. Following China, we have the US, with $5.1 billion spending on virtual reality. Combined, these two account for 58% of the global investments in the industry. The next two spots belong to Western Europe with $3.3 billion and finally Japan with $1.8 billion in investments.
19. The virtual reality gaming market size is projected to reach $92.31 billion by 2027.
Thanks to the innovations in VR development, virtual reality games are the new big thing in the world of gamers. Using immersing in VR accessories, and 3D environments, game makers are improving their products and pushing this growth. VR games sales statistics further point to a CAGR of 30.2% between 2020 and 2027.
(Grand View Research)
Virtual Reality Growth in Different Industries
20. In Germany, 50% of people surveyed would use VR to choose their holiday destination if it were free.
Research conducted in Germany has shown that people are eager to use VR for tourism purposes. On top of those who would use it if it were free, 13% of respondents would be willing to pay for it as well. Not just that, but also VR tourism statistics from Tourism Australia demonstrated that 20% of consumers already use VR to choose a holiday destination. Moreover, 25% plan to use it in the future to better decide on where to travel.
21. Around 46% of companies in the automotive and manufacturing industries think VR/AR will become mainstream for their company in the next three years.
In line with the latest report, surveying over 700 executives from the manufacturing, automotive, and utility segments, VR has a prominent place in their future. 50% of those currently not having AR or VR, plan to start exploring this tech for their business in the next three years. While 46% of these execs think the tech will become mainstream in their organization in the following three years, for 38% it’s three to five.
22. 97% of students have expressed interest in VR courses.
Despite the great interest among students, only 23% of schools actually tested the VR. Second, just 10% are in fact planning to use it in the years to come. According to VR learning statistics, 68% of teachers want to use this tech to enrich their courses and provide better educational materials. On top of that, 72% of them want to use VR simulations to reproduce real-life experiences related to the course.
23. Education might end up being the 4th biggest segment for VR investments.
Describing in the correct manner complicated concepts to the students and making them more understandable is one of the limitations of the modern education system. Many of these could be mitigated using VR in education, statistics confirm. In fact, VR usage in this context was forecast to reach $200 million worth by 2020, and $700 million by 2025.
(The App Solutions)
24. Facebook disclosed that 60 games released for Oculus Quest and Quest 2 made over $1 million in less than a year.
VR sales for Oculus games soared since the start of 2020. Skydance’s ‘The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners’ grossed $29 million. It corresponded with the VR sales numbers of the new Oculus Quest 2 headset in October 2020. Facebook only announced that the preorders for this particular headset were five times higher than those for Quest 1.
(The Washington Post)
Virtual Reality Trends
25. By 2030, VR and AR might impact up to 23 million jobs.
At the moment, fewer than a million jobs suffer an impact from the AR and VR industry growth. However, these two will boost innovation and foster productivity. Therefore, the number of impacted jobs, especially in China, the US, the UK, and Germany will rise much higher.
26. Virtual reality together with augmented reality could potentially boost the global economy by £985 billion ($1.3 trillion) by 2030.
PwC UK conducted research and evaluated the potential influence of VR/AR on the global economy. Their augmented and virtual reality projections show that different uses for these technologies will drive the impact they have on global GDP.
The Bottom Line
These VR statistics point to the impact of the technology across the actual reality. VR keeps pushing boundaries and driving immersive experiences across the industries. It’s only a matter of time before we see it at every corner. One thing is certain, whether, for business or personal reasons, you should get tickets for the front row of this (VR) show.
Virtual Reality FAQ
How many VR users are there?
Approximately 171 million people are using virtual reality today. In the US alone, there were over 57 million users in 2020. This number has been on the rise during the course of the last six years. Not just VR, but also augmented reality, with augmented reality statistics showing that in 2020 there were 90.9 million AR users in the US. As a matter of fact, 53% of users of both think AR has higher chances to become omnipresent.
What percentage of gamers use VR?
According to VR stats from the Entertainment Software Association, in 2020 some 73% of the American gamers owned a console (total number of gamers: 169 million). But only 29% owned a VR system. Out of all global VR users, 16 million think of themselves as hardcore gamers.
Who uses VR the most?
Apparently, the largest spender on AR and VR in 2020 was China. The country spent over $5.8 billion on this tech, accounting for 38% of the global AR/VR market share. After it, the US spends the most, with around $5.1 billion. Western Europe holds the third spot, having spent $3.3 billion in the same period.
Which VR headset has sold the most?
VR statistics point to rising sales of Oculus Quest 2 since the Q4 of 2020, with over a million of these VR headsets sold in that quarter alone. During the same quarter, PlayStation sold over 125,000 unit sales, taking second place. Finally, we have Valve Index with roughly 61,000 headsets sold and Oculus Rift/Rift 5 with about 55,000.
What ages use virtual reality?
The stats show that 23% of the AR/VR device owners in the US were between 25 and 34 years old. Similarly, 27% of those considering buying it were in the same category. Typically, people aged 16-34 are those who are more likely to use virtual reality. 34% of those between 16 and 24 years old use VR, and 35% of those between 25 and 34 years old also. Only 6% of people older than 55 years are users of this technology.
How many VR headsets are sold?
In line with virtual reality sales stats, by 2021, VR headsets sales are expected to reach 6.1 million items. That accounts for the total installed base of 16.44 million units.
Is virtual reality safe?
Some recent research shows that 20-minute exposure to VR could have an impact on children’s ability to differentiate the distance to objects. On top of the headaches caused by the proximity of the screen, and the potential impact on the development of myopia (short-sightedness), the VR companies are trying to address the issues. In any case, it’s important to read and follow all instructions that come with the headset.
Is VR bad for your brain?
Aside from the eye strain due to the processing of visual stimuli so close to the face, VR could cause dizziness. However, no scientific confirmation or virtual reality facts indicate that this tech can cause brain damage in kids or adults.
How much does it cost to make VR content?
The cost of developing a VR game, for instance, depends on multiple aspects. First, we have the type of the game, then the development team structure, the amount of content, and its quality. Finally, technologies used for the development play a significant role. So according to virtual reality statistics, an average simple VR game costs up to $5,000 to create. On the other hand, creating a massive MMORPG game can cost millions.