While Oculus and HTC prepare for a deluge of virtual reality headset shipments over the next several weeks, Sony is sitting back and watching it all, taking in reactions of users, while having plenty of time to make changes to avoid any errors that either competitor may make over the next month or two. While Playstation enthusiasts were initially up in arms after Sony decided to push the launch of their Playstation VR headset back to October, (initially the company planned on a launch during the first half of the year) ultimately the move may benefit both Sony as well as their future customers.
In a recent interview, Sony’s Shuhei Yoshida said that the company had originally planned to release the Playstation VR around June, perhaps just in time for E3 2016, but when the company began to realize that demand would greatly outstrip supply, they decided to push the launch back several months.
“We had an internal target that we realized was a bit too small. That was the reason why we pushed back the launch from the first half [of 2016]. We were kind of thinking around the June time frame, like an E3 time frame,” explained Yoshida. “The hardware development has been done, it’s on schedule and more and more we get feedback from consumers and retailers, and our business side realized we needed more units than we had originally anticipated to prepare for the launch. The only thing we could do was delay the launch so that we could manufacture more for day one. That’s the biggest reason for an October launch as opposed to the first half.”
While Yoshida did not state what their revised demand projections may be for 2016, those close to the company have indicated that they now expect between 1 and 2 million units sold in 2016 alone. This number could rise even further if Oculus Rift and HTC Vive sales show that demand within the VR space is high. Also the fact that Sony may announce a new, higher performing ‘Playstation 4.5’ or ‘Playstation 4K’ right before the October release of the PS VR, may drive demand even further.
While some analysts criticized Sony for waiting six months after the launch of the Vive and Rift to debut their Vr headset, ultimately the delay will likely help, not hurt, Sony as many gamers are holding off on a purchase waiting to see how the dust settles within the VR battle for supremacy. What are your thoughts on Sony’s sales projections, and will you be waiting it out? Let us know in the Sony Playstation VR Sales forum thread on VRTalk.com.