CES 2018: AR and VR Poised for Record Growth in 2018

Sales of headsets and eyewear outfitted for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are poised for a record year, according to a new forecast from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA).

The CTA said it expects sales of AR and VR headsets and eyewear to reach a record 4.9 million units in the U.S. in 2018, a more than 25% increase from 2017. Those sales will produce about $1.2 billion in revenues, a 10% increase from 2016, CTA added.

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The organization noted that it expects sales of consumer-focused AR eyewear to “accelerate considerably” within the next five years.

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The CTA announced its VR/AR projections ahead of a U.S. Consumer Technology Sales and Forecasts report that will be released at CES, which is set to run Jan. 9-12 in Las Vegas.

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The CTA will also expand the space dedicated to AR and VR at next week’s show, noting that its Augmented Reality Marketplace will grow to a record 10,900 net square feet, making it 10% larger than that at the 2017 gadgetfest. Meanwhile, the show’s Gaming & Virtual Reality Marketplace, will expand to 34,100 net square feet, an 18% year-on-year increase.

The association also noted that its AR/VR Working Group, operating under its Technology & Standards Program, will “soon” wrap up work on technical definitions covering a “broad spectrum” for those industries, including MR, XR, outside-in tracking and Six Degrees of Freedom (6DoF).

Last year, that working group stamped the following definitions:

-Augmented Reality (AR) overlays digitally-created content into the user's real-world environment

-Mixed Reality (MR) is an experience that seamlessly blends the user's real-world environment and digitally-created content, where both environments can coexist and interact with each other

-Virtual Reality (VR) creates a digital environment that replaces the user's real-world environment

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