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Facing up to the new virtual reality
Facebook really wants people to give virtual reality (VR) a try, so it’s launched a second headset that will cost half the price of its original Oculus Rift.
Its latest Oculus Go was launched at last week’s F8 developers conference in California and will sell for $199, versus the $399 asking price of the Rift.
This is a big deal for UK-based VR application start-ups EVR (EVRH:AIM) and VR Education (VRE:AIM). Their respective rock concerts and Apollo 11 moon landing apps both come pre-installed on Go headsets.
But VR sales have not lived up to early hype, at least not so far. Just 700,000 Oculus Rift’s were shipped last year, according to Trendforce data, about 19% of all VR shipments. More than 1.4bn smartphones were sold worldwide in 2017. Still, one analyst reckons 1.8m Oculus Go sets could sell in 2018.