HTC has sold almost 100,000 units of its Vive virtual reality headset that went on sale March, according to an estimate based on customer usage. The $800 Vive headset came with several games that operate on the Steam video gaming network. Steam usage statistics show almost 78,000 people have played Job Simulator, which was bundled with the Vive hardware, the website Road to VR reported on Monday. Several other Vive games that can also be used on other hardware showed usage of almost 95,000.
Analysts are divided over how quickly virtual reality will catch on. At the high end, 20 million units could be sold this year, including all types of VR headsets and accompanying controllers and accessories, according to market research firm Tractica. Neil Schneider, executive director of the Immersive Technology Alliance, came up with a much smaller estimate of 300,000 units in the first 12 months on sale. Cheaper VR hardware that relies on using smartphones and not a PC, such as the Samsung Gear, could sell 10 times as many units, Schneider estimated. And looking out a few years, market tracker Digi-Capital cut its rather optimistic forecast for spending on virtual and augmented reality in 2020 to $120 billion, down from an earlier forecast of $150 billion.