Another month, another record high count for the VR usership on Steam. Quest 2, despite being a standalone headset, has helped to drive much of the growth thanks to its ability to connect to a PC to play PC VR games on Oculus PC or Steam. It has become the most used headset on Steam for the first time.
Monthly-connected VR Headsets on Steam
Each month Valve collects info from Steam users to determine some baseline statistics about what kind of hardware and software is used by the platform’s population, and to see how things are changing over time, including the use of VR headsets.
The data shared in the survey represents the number of headsets connected to Steam over a given month, so we call the resulting figure ‘monthly-connected headsets’ for clarity; it’s the closest official figure there is to ‘monthly active VR users’ on Steam, with the caveat that it only tells us how many VR headsets were connected, not how many were actually used.
While Valve’s data is a useful way see which headsets are most popular on Steam, the trend of monthly-connected headsets has always been obfuscated because the data is given exclusively as percentages relative to Steam’s population—which itself is an unstated and constantly fluctuating figure.
To demystify the data Road to VR maintains a model, based on the historical survey data along with official data points directly from Valve and Steam, which aims to correct for Steam’s changing population to estimate the actual count—not the percent—of headsets being used on Steam.
The latest shows that the holiday surge has not relented, with February bringing Steam’s monthly-connected headset count to a new record high of 2.8 million. The record figure comes immediately after January had set the prior record at 2.6 million.
Quest 2 was the most significant driver of the increase seen in February, with Quest 2 becoming the single most used VR headset on Steam.
Share of VR Headsets on Steam
Looking at the breakdown of individual headsets in use on Steam, we can see that Quest 2 is continuing to take a large bite out of the pie. While the headset saw an inflated gain last month (because it was the first month the headset got its own category Valve’s data), this month shows the headset’s true pace, picking up a whopping +5.51% in share for a total of 22.91%. This makes Quest 2 the most used VR headset on Steam in February, besting the 21.58% share held by Rift S.
Though the gains in Quest 2 appear to have come largely from other Facebook headsets; even though Quest 2 picked up +5.51% share, the share of all Facebook headsets on Steam only rose by +1.58% (suggesting existing Oculus customers are trading up to a Quest 2). Still, this furthers Facebook’s position overall, with 57.98% of headsets in use on Steam made by Facebook.
Other winners this month was Valve’s own Index headset, which has reached 16.0% (+0.17%), and Windows Mixed Reality which, despite adding a few thousand headsets, actually dropped in share down to 6.15% (−0.23%) as a result of bigger proportional gains by others (like Quest 2).
The largest losses in the share of headsets on Steam in February came from Rift S (−1.78%), Quest (−1.58%), and HTC Vive (−1.01%), with the share of all HTC headsets on Steam dropping to 17.24% (−1.29%).