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7 best virtual reality stocks to watch in 2021 | Stock market news

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Virtual reality is the ultimate form of escape, and technology is moving in that direction.

The global virtual reality market is expected to more than triple over the next seven years, from $ 21.83 billion to $ 69.6 billion by 2028. As a technology still on the horizon (vehicles familiar and fully self-contained?), it may be tempting to dismiss VR as an interesting but unproductive area of ​​interest. It would be a mistake. Almost all of the big tech companies are investing in virtual reality and augmented reality, and the prohibitive prices and goofy gadgets that have made the region a niche industry for hobbyists are giving way to affordability and user-friendliness. Here are seven of the best VR stocks to watch out for today.

    Oculus Quest 2 headset for virtual reality white and close-up

Facebook Inc. (symbol: FB)

On Facebook’s latest earnings conference call, CEO Mark Zuckerberg became a complete “metaverse,” glowingly describing a future where people can work, play and live in a digital world through avatars. To that end, Facebook didn’t just talk: the acquisition of Oculus in 2014 paved the way for Facebook’s leadership position in the VR headset market today. A June report by research firm IDC noted that Oculus was “on its own” driving growth in the global VR headset market. Its price tag of $ 299 makes Facebook’s Oculus Quest 2 the world’s most affordable mainstream headset, with that affordability giving a quick lead in market share, and with it, early VR developers creating an influx of new games. . This is the kind of “flying effect” that is getting worse and is expected to allow Facebook to establish itself in the industry for years to come.

Virtual reality is the ultimate form of escape, and technology is moving in that direction.

The global virtual reality market is expected to more than triple over the next seven years, from $ 21.83 billion to $ 69.6 billion by 2028. As a technology still on the horizon (vehicles familiar and fully self-contained?), it may be tempting to dismiss VR as an interesting but unproductive area of ​​interest. It would be a mistake. Almost all of the big tech companies are investing in virtual reality and augmented reality, and the prohibitive prices and goofy gadgets that have made the region a niche industry for hobbyists are giving way to affordability and user-friendliness. Here are seven of the best VR stocks to watch out for today.

Facebook Inc. (symbol: FB)

On Facebook’s latest earnings conference call, CEO Mark Zuckerberg became a complete “metaverse,” glowingly describing a future where people can work, play and live in a digital world through avatars. To that end, Facebook didn’t just talk: the acquisition of Oculus in 2014 paved the way for Facebook’s leadership position in the VR headset market today. A June report by research firm IDC noted that Oculus was “on its own” driving growth in the global VR headset market. Its price tag of $ 299 makes Facebook’s Oculus Quest 2 the world’s most affordable mainstream headset, with that affordability giving a quick lead in market share, and with it, early VR developers creating an influx of new games. . This is the kind of “flying effect” that is getting worse and is expected to allow Facebook to establish itself in the industry for years to come.

Sony Group Corp. (SONY)

While Facebook’s Oculus Quest 2 makes the social media giant one of the most popular VR titles to watch in the years to come, Sony is no slouch. In fact, its PlayStation VR headset is, according to the most recent publicly available information, the best-selling VR headset of all time, with sales eclipsing 5 million units through early 2020. Everything indicates that Facebook captures momentum there – 2021 estimates Oculus is selling three times faster than PSVR, and IDC estimates Sony took fifth place in global shipments in Q1 – but PSVR compatibility with PlayStation 4 and the newer, faster PS5 console is a great combination. Sony’s biggest direct competitor in video games, Microsoft’s Xbox line of products, lacks VR compatibility, so Sony’s mainstream gaming market is at stake.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT)

While Sony may be playing solo when it comes to VR ties to the console market, Microsoft isn’t content to just sit idly by and let a burgeoning and promising tech market be swallowed up by competitors. Instead of the consumer angle, Microsoft is tackling what could be a bigger fish: the business space. In fact, in March, the company signed a five-year deal with the U.S. military – with a potential for a five-year extension – worth up to $ 21.9 billion to supply Microsoft HoloLens headsets to the United States. ‘army. “Mixed reality” headsets incorporate augmented reality, or AR, to help humans with their tasks and efficiency, with models ranging from $ 3,500 to around $ 5,000 per device. Modified versions almost certainly cost multiples of that, and with Microsoft already proving that HoloLens is worth billions of dollars for the U.S. military, commercial applications of the product in other areas – think healthcare and manufacturing – could also represent huge markets.

Alphabet Inc. (GOOG, GOOGL)

Perhaps it’s no surprise that Alphabet’s Google is a leader in VR and AR. Those who follow space will remember the search giant’s failed entry into visual AR overlays via the 2013 version of Google Glass. The product has since undergone several iterations and is now relegated to the corporate space. But Google’s first commercial experiments were followed by new applications such as Google Lens (visual search); overlays in Google Maps; a growing field of YouTube virtual reality creators; and software like Google Earth VR, which allows Oculus Rift users to explore virtually anywhere in the world. As this technology improves, expect Google to remain a major player among VR stocks and AR leaders.

Apple Inc. (AAPL)

Apple, the world’s most valuable publicly traded company with more than $ 2.5 trillion and a member of the much-vaunted contingent of FAANG shares, has the kind of resources most companies in this space could only dream of. Plus, it has a dedicated army of developers creating AR apps for its ubiquitous App Store. Listing Apple as one of the top VR stocks could arguably be premature, given that the company has yet to break into virtual reality, but that’s simply because Apple hasn’t. further perfected such a product. The popular Apple tracking website MacRumors recently reported speculation that the company has hundreds of people working quietly on multiple products, including an AR and VR compatible headset and AR glasses. Whatever the truth of the rumor is, you can safely bet that Apple has learned from rivals’ previous missteps in this area. It is possible that one of these products will be launched as early as 2022.

Qualcomm Inc. (QCOM)

Another smart way to invest in VR is not to buy the VR companies themselves, but to buy shares in derivative players whose products make the technology possible. This includes purchasing the semiconductor stocks that supply chips for VR devices. Enter Qualcomm, a $ 160 billion supplier to previous companies on this list, including Facebook’s market leader Oculus Quest 2, which uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 platform. Qualcomm’s latest extended reality chips work with 5G and enable a seamless combination of artificial intelligence, 5G, and virtual and augmented reality to enable experiences consumers cannot even imagine today. If you think virtual reality will be dominated by mobile devices, QCOM is a smart way to bet on this eventuality.

Nvidia Corp. (NVDA)

The ‘reality’ part of virtual reality relies heavily on compelling graphics that make virtual experiences look real. Chipmaker Nvidia is the best of the best in this department, with its high-end graphics processing units, or GPUs, essentially considered must-have components for high-end gaming devices. This includes VR headsets, with Nvidia’s Turing GPUs and state-of-the-art GeForce RTX GPUs. Nvidia offers a VRWorks suite that gives developers tools to build VR apps, and in its latest earnings announcement, the company touted the release of Nvidia Omniverse. CEO Jensen Huang described it as “a nearly five-year-old simulation platform that manages physically realistic virtual worlds and connects to other digital platforms.” He sees the platform enabling “digital twins and industrial metavers”.

Seven of the best VR stocks to watch in 2021:

Update to September 7, 2021: This story was posted on an earlier date and has been updated with new information.

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