If you bought a Meta Quest 2 (or an Oculus Quest 2 when it was called that) at some point in the last year, you’re not the only one who bought it.
Meta’s best VR headset has been hugely popular for the past couple of years, making it to the top of the list Steam Users Hardware Survey Statistics (opens in new tab)and (according to the latest IDC report (opens in new tab)) given Meta’s near-total dominance in the VR market.
International Data Corporation (IDC) regularly tracks and publishes market data for various industries, including VR. Their latest information indicates that Meta now controls 90% of the VR market worldwide, thanks to the roughly 14.8 million people who have purchased a Quest 2 since its release in late 2020.
Quest 2 sales didn’t just help Meta, the entire VR market increased. Global shipments grew 97% in 2021 compared to 2020, and in the first quarter of this year (January to March) headset shipments increased by 241%.
But while it’s great that you have more people than ever to play the best Quest 2 games – like the new epic shooter Wands Alliances – can Meta’s dominance last?
Analysis: Can Quest 2 be captured?
The numbers make it clear that Meta has a dominant lead over the competition in the VR space. While there are other headphones out there – like the Valve Index – they just don’t seem popular enough to take on this behemoth.
Unfortunately, the next headphones might not be much better than the ones before.
Many are excited about the eventual release of the PSVR 2 – which still doesn’t have a release date – but this device already has a distinct downside: platform exclusivity. To use it, you will need a PS5.
Although around 20 million PS5s have been sold, to surpass the Quest 2’s popularity, Sony would need more than 75% of owners to buy its headset. That’s a really high adoption rate, and expensive hardware probably won’t be that popular – we don’t know the cost of the PSVR 2 yet, but the original was $499 / £399 (about AU$650) at launch.
Case in point, a report in 2019 suggested that 4.2 million PSVR headsets were purchased by gamers, but this represents only 4% of the 94 million PS4s believed to have been sold at that time (via Ars Technica (opens in new tab)). With the PS5 costing more than the PS4 – especially if you’ve been tricked by a scalper into shelling out more than your $499 / £449 / AU$749.95 rrp – gamers may be less keen to fork out even more for a complement.
Apple can compete too, but its Apple AR/VR headset will likely be too expensive to be a rival to the Quest 2. Instead, it will likely compete for dominance in the more business-centric VR space against the Project Cambria headset. of the Goal.
Apple’s headset is rumored to cost at least $1,000 / £1,000 / AU$1,500 – but potentially more. Unless you have some killer games and apps that can rival the Quest exclusives Resident Evil 4 VR and the upcoming GTA San Andreas VR (among many, many others), gamers will have an easy choice. Plus, with the cost of living as high as it is now, VR enthusiasts will likely find it even easier to choose the Quest 2, which is just £299 / $299 / AU$479.
We can’t call him out on PSVR 2 or Apple’s headset until they actually come out and get a chance to fight Meta’s Quest 2, but we rank the defending champion as the favorite in both fights. Perhaps Sony or Apple has a trick up their sleeve and one of the devices exceeds expectations, but at this stage the only headset that can beat the Quest 2 is the Meta Quest 3.