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Infographic – VR, AR Yet to Reach Critical Mass

Bar chart: VR and AR adoption through 2027

Click on image for full-size view (Statista)

3 June 2023. Science & Enterprise occasionally reports on new uses for virtual reality or augmented reality in business and medical systems, particularly when based on research evidence. Virtual reality or VR is a simulated three-dimensional sensory experience that replaces an individual’s real-world environment, while augmented reality or AR superimposes digital text, visual, or audio data in real time on a person’s real world experiences.

While applications of VR and AR technologies can seem compelling, the numbers of people actually using these systems remain relatively small. The business research company Statista released data yesterday from its Market Insights report on VR and AR showing some 98 million VR users and 23 million AR users worldwide. Those user numbers are expected to reach or exceed 120 million for VR in 2025 and 90 million for AR in 2026. By comparison, smartphone users today number in the billions.

VR games are currently, and by a wide margin, the top use of the technology and Meta, parent company of Facebook, has largely owned the VR gaming market up to now. But Apple is expected to announce a VR/AR headset at its worldwide developers conference that begins on Monday. Historically, Apple has shown it can dominate markets with dramatic advances in technology, such as iPod and iPhone.

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