While many have tapped VR Gaming to play a big role in gaming’s future, it would seem that the technology is currently in the midst of some difficult financial waters.
Following a controversial rise in the prices of some popular VR headsets owned by Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook has revealed some concerning news regarding its VR division, called Reality Labs.
As reported by CNBC, according to the company's recent financials, this department lost $2.8 Billion during the Q2 period of the financial year, which came to a close in June.
VR We Going To Have A Problem?
However, as CNBC reveals in a separate report, the disappointing numbers surrounding Meta's ongoing investment into the VR space aren’t unique to that area of the company’s business, with the financials as a whole being described as illustrating a “surprisingly weak forecast.”
Still, for those hoping that VR headset prices will drop as the technology matures, leading to more widespread adoption of the currently-niche technology that might inspire more players and game publishers to give it a try, learning that Reality Labs only returned $452 million in revenue during the period outlined isn’t good news.
It’s especially concerning given that Meta owns the current most popular headset on the VR gaming market, a claim corroborated by recent Steam hardware survey data, in the form of Oculus’ Quest 2.
While around 49% of VR gamers on Steam right now own this headset, relegating the Valve Index HMD headset to a distant second place with around 15%, it’s unlikely that Meta’s flagship will improve much on this number anytime soon, with both available versions of the headset’s prices set to rise by around $100/£82.
This will put the two headsets at around $400/£329 and $500/£411 respectively, with the free inclusion of the popular VR game Beat Saber with purchases not doing much to offset the hike.
CNBC also suggest the reported VR loss to be “a substantial but affordable expense” for Meta, possibly leading consumers to wonder which such an increase is necessary right now.
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