What are the top things British consumers are looking for in a VR headset?
January 18th, 2024, YouGov

What are the top things British consumers are looking for in a VR headset?

With major players entering the market this year, including Apple which launches its Vision Pro product next month, we used YouGov Self-serve to ask what British consumers are looking for when it comes to virtual reality/spatial computing headsets.

Just 8% of British consumers already own a headset and a broadly similar amount intend to buy one in the next 12 months (7%) - that’s around half the size of the American market in both cases. So what are they looking forward to doing once they’ve strapped their headset on? We asked people which experiences they thought could be improved through the use of a headset.

The biggest draw is video gaming, with almost half (46%) of Brits believing that gaming can be improved with the use of a VR or spatial computing headset. The next most popular option was tourism-related – exploring new destinations ahead of a visit an aspect of VR which shows potential for 32% of Americans. A slightly smaller share say the same about watching movies and learning new skills or about new subjects (both 24%).

Around one in eight consumers see the potential upside to VR of watching TV shows, watching sport and visiting new places but much smaller shares can imagine office meetings or working on documents being improved by strapping on their VR goggles. In fact only 1% of Brits say that a headset is more of a device for work, compared to 69% who say it is for leisure (14% say equal parts both). Only 8% say socialising with friends or family could be enhanced in VR.

So now we know what people may use a headset for. But what are they looking for in terms of features? We asked consumers to choose their top five considerations.

Several higher order priorities emerged and they were price, lightweight build, battery life and screen resolution, each selected by around two in five respondents.

Amongst lower order priorities are easy integration with other hardware, like phones and tablets, privacy and security settings and a wide range of apps.

Finally, we asked about price and, as reflected in the last question, consumers want to keep their spend levels low. When asked how much they would be prepared to spend, the most common answers British consumers gave were between £1 and £250 and between £251 and £500 (22% and 20% respectively plumped for these options). Consumers opting to spend more than the £2,000 mark are in a very small minority right now – albeit that that could change very quickly if the spatial computing headset takes the same trajectory as the cell phone in the early 2000s.

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Methodology: YouGov polled 1,000 Great Britain adults on January 10, 2024. The survey was carried out through YouGov Surveys: Self-serve. Data is weighted by age, gender, race, political affiliation, education level and region. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Self-serve.

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