Is the growth in VR and AR an opportunity for carrier billing?
6 September 2022
According to Allied Market Research, the Virtual and Augmented Reality sector was valued at $14.84 billion in 2020 and has been projected to grow to $454.73 billion by 2030, a CAGR of 40.7%. The use of VR and AR goes beyond games like Pokémon Go, it can be deployed “in instructional training, such as teaching engineers, mechanics, pilots, field workers, defence warriors and technicians in the manufacturing and oil and gas sectors” which has been “propelling the market forward” (Grandview Research). This adoption of VR and AR has opened doors to future developments for travel, entertainment and sports segments.
Bloomberg.com has outlined three main growth drivers in the VR and AR market;
- The thriving gaming industry
- Increased global reach of the internet
- Use in enterprises, such as healthcare, retail, manufacturing, defence, aerospace, education, etc.
Each of these is present throughout the various global markets in some form. For example, the US has the fastest growing market revenue, helped by the presence of tech companies like Microsoft, Apple Inc., Google, etc and the government using VR for training purposes (Grandview Research). Whereas Europe is expected to be the fastest growing regional market, with its larger gaming population and the development of VR hardware targeted at this community (Grandview Research). In 2019 Japan launched its 5G services, “prompting telecom companies to offer Augmented Reality / Virtual Reality viewing platforms that take advantage of 5G connectivity” (Grandview Research). This would suggest that there is an opportunity for carrier billing in these regions when properly targeted.
According to Grandview Research, there are two VR device types; head-mounted display (HMD) and gesture tracking device (GTD). The report continues that the HMD holds the largest share, with over 60% in 2021 and this is expected to continue through to 2030. These work with controllers to play games on compatible consoles. The GTDs however are expected to have the fasted growing CAGR (Grandview Research) due to the demand for completely immersive worlds that you can virtually reach out and interact with. In addition to these, smartphones, tablets and other advanced gadgets can be used for VR and AR, through shopping, learning and gaming apps like Pokémon Go and 3D knowledge-sharing platforms such as Jig Space.
Both are accessible to enterprise and consumer markets, with hardware available at a range of prices and specs from companies like HTC, HP and Meta. To support the hardware, these companies have developed software to suit the needs/wants of the users. Some of these exist within the software on the devices and others are tethered to PCs. Here is where users can purchase games, create their avatars and interact with the content available in portals to buy.
Opportunities for Carrier Billing
As we can see, the VR and AR market is not only fast-growing but far-reaching. The technology has penetrated various markets with uses across education, gaming, training, health, aerospace and sales. Whilst the enterprise side of the market may not be suitable for carrier billing currently, the consumer segment offers one-off digital purchases that are more suited to this payment method, such as games and their associated add-ons. Offering payments through carrier billing for the consumers would ensure that they have access to a real-life, secure and hassle-free payment method for goods in their virtual world. To find out more, contact our team today.