2022 could be the year of VR, with the PSVR 2, Oculus Quest 3 and Apple VR headsets all expected to launch next year.
The latest rumour comes from a note by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (via Android Central), who predicts that Facebook will ship between 18 and 20 million Quest 3 units in 2022 – an increase from the eight to nine million Quest 2 headsets he sees shipping in 2021.
Sony is also expected to launch the PSVR 2 is in 2022, according to a recent report by Bloomberg.
In Kuo’s note, the analyst discusses the number of orders received by Taiwanese lens manufacturer Yujingguang, the company expected to provide lenses for the Sony headset.
According to Kuo’s estimations, the current VR lens costs six to eight times that of a smartphone lens to make, and this number is only expected to increase for the next generation of headsets with upgrades such as improved clarity and a wider field of view predicted to be on their way.
Yujingguang reportedly makes around half of Oculus Quest 2 lenses and will go on to manufacture 50% of Quest 3 and PSVR 2 lenses going forward.
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Aside from the lenses, Kuo notes that the PSVR 2 will feature four cameras to support inside-out tracking rather than relying on a TV-mounted camera.
The predictions come just months after Kuo shared a research note detailing Apple’s roadmap to release its own mixed reality headset in mid-2022.
“We predict that Apple’s MR/AR product roadmap includes three phases: helmet type by 2022, glasses type by 2025, and contact lens type by 2030–2040”, wrote Kuo back in March (via MacRumors).
“We foresee that the helmet product will provide AR and VR experiences, while glasses and contact lens types of products are more likely to focus on AR applications”.
According to Kuo, the Apple VR headset prototype weighs 200 to 300 grams but Apple hopes to reduce the final weight to 100 to 200 grams, making the headset lighter than those of its competitors.
The Apple VR headset is expected to cost around $1000 in the US (that’s about £716 in the UK), making it more expensive than the current PSVR and Oculus Quest 2.
The Trusted Take
VR headsets may have been around for a few years now, but 2022 looks to be the year when it finally takes off for the majority of gamers. The existing PSVR is a decent VR headset, but it’s got a lot of flaws. By increasing the resolution and introducing inside-out tracking, the sequel could be a far more attractive proposition.
I am however surprised that the Oculus Quest 3 could arrive so soon after the Oculus Quest 2. Boosting the resolution seems to be a sensible upgrade, but with Facebook now reportedly pushing adverts in the Oculus app, it will be interesting to see whether it can still hit those impressive sales predictions.
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