Augmented reality and virtual reality investment reached $1.1 billion in the first 2 months of this year, according to tech advisor Digi-Capital. That figure is impressive because it beats the $686 million in AR/VR investments for all of 2015, and this is the first time that AR/VR investment has topped a billion dollars in any year.
About $794 million came from the big Magic Leap round of investment, which was confirmed on February 2. Another $300 million went into AR/VR solutions and services, VR hardware, advertising and marketing, distribution, apps and games, video, and peripherals. Even without Magic Leap, investment is up 20 percent so far in the first quarter of 2016, compared to the $250 million invested in Q4 2015. Plus, another four weeks are left for investors to boost AR/VR this quarter.
Tim Merel, managing director of Digi-Capital and CEO of Eyetouch Reality, predicts that AR/VR revenues will hit $120 billion by 2020. Last year, AR/VR investments hit $686 million, and the investment in AR/VR has been growing for the past six quarters. Not every category is benefiting from the huge inflow of money into AR/VR. For instance, game investment and acquisitions dropped 81 percent in 2015. But, that is expected to change because of the closing of the Magic Leap and King deals in 2016.