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VR to be a $51bn market by 2030, says GlobalData

Firm expects enterprise applications to grow the sector from last year's estimated total of $5 billion worldwide

GlobalData today released some projections from its latest report on virtual reality, saying the market would grow to be a $51 billion industry by 2030.

Despite the eventual upside, the analytics firm acknowledged that it is far short of that level now, estimating the global market at about $5 billion in 2020.

"VR has been around for over six decades, in one form or another, but it is still not a mainstream technology," said GlobalData associate project manager Rupantar Guha.

"Both VR hardware and software have evolved significantly in recent years, but issues such as latency, high prices, privacy concerns and a dearth of compelling content have been preventing widespread adoption.

"While technologies such as 5G, cloud services and motion tracking are used to address latency issues, improving content and developing effective data privacy practices will be paramount for VR's success."

GlobalData attributes the expected VR boost in the coming years to enterprise applications rather than consumer-level VR, as the latter segment has struggled to find a "semi-mythical 'killer app'" to bring new users to the technology.

"We expect enterprise to become the key market for VR over the next three years, outpacing the consumer segment," Guha said.

"VR is already in use across the retail, defense, airlines, oil and gas, and healthcare industries -- primarily for training purposes. However, the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a shift to remote working that has boosted the adoption of VR by enterprises not just for training, but for collaboration, data visualization and customer experience."

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Brendan Sinclair

Managing Editor

Brendan joined GamesIndustry.biz in 2012. Based in Toronto, Ontario, he was previously senior news editor at GameSpot in the US.