Since launching in February, Sony’s high-end virtual reality peripheral for the PlayStation 5 has underperformed as far as sales numbers go. The PSVR2, the successor to PS4’s headset from 2016, has sold less than 300,000 units.
Bloomberg is reporting that the IDC estimates that Sony’s latest virtual reality headset may have as many as 270K PSVR2 kits by the end of March (tomorrow). In contrast, according to Forbes, the PS5 has sold around 32 million. The PSVR2 adoption rate is less than 1%.
Sony’s PSVR2 had several things against it when battling for consumer dollars. For one, the headset is priced at $549. Another issue is that it launched during a time of economic inflation. The PSVR2 was also tethered exclusively to the PlayStation 5. Competing headsets like Meta’s Oculus Quest 2 were more flexible and less expensive.
In the Oculus Quest 2’s first year, it sold 14.8 million units. However, comparing Meta’s hardware with Sony’s may be unfair. The Quest 2 was less of a technological powerhouse, but it did launch when more people were stuck at home during the pandemic.
Sony did come out of the gate swinging, thankfully. The PSVR2 launched with over 40 games. Some of them, from what we’ve seen, is quite impressive. However, justifying paying for an add-on accessory that is more expensive than the console it is tied to doesn’t make sense for the average person.
Sony must determine how to make the virtual reality device more appealing to budget-conscious gamers. Either reduce the price by 25% or allow the PSVR2 to be PC compatible. I share Forbe’s speculation that Sony will refuse to allow the headset to work on anything but Sony hardware.
I admit that the technical specifications for the PSVR2 have me interested in buying one. However, I found Sony’s lackluster support of the last VR headset. Although, that is probably due to a few third-party developers making intriguing games.[Source: Bloomberg]
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