Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) headsets, wearables, and voice-controlled homes were once the stuff of science fiction. But, according to research released today by the International Data Corporation (IDC), VR, AR, wearables, and innovative home technology have all passed the early adoption stage and are now firmly part of the “mass market.” According to the worldwide research agency, the combined market will reach $369.6 billion by the end of 2021 and $524.9 billion by 2025.
AR and VR, combined, are expected to expand most of the three categories, according to IDC, thanks to both corporations and individual customers. According to IDC, the latter is particularly interested in “strong gaming solutions.” Today, businesses account for most AR spending, but IDC believes the market for AR headsets aimed at the general public will expand. It forecasted a compound annual growth rate of 67.9% for AR and VR combined from 2020 to 2025, more than ten times the next competitor, innovative home technology (10.1 percent growth rate).
Smart home and office technology will be driven by services rather than hardware features and reliability, according to Adam Wright, senior research analyst for IDC’s Smart Home and Office Devices team. On the other hand, Earwear and smartwatches are likely to lead the wearables market during the next five years. Despite being higher than the AR and VR markets in 2021 and 2025, IDC believes the wearables industry will expand at the slowest rate of the three categories.