SteamVR in February 2023: PC VR usage is seemingly declining

SteamVR in February 2023: PC VR usage is seemingly declining

According to the latest SteamVR statistics, PC VR usage is still stagnant or even declining, and PSVR 2 may be a factor.

Valve's monthly Hardware & Software survey registers all VR headsets that were connected to a PC with Steam installed that month and whose users participated in the data collection. The statistics show, among other things, the percentage of SteamVR users in the total Steam user base.

The highest recorded value so far is 2.31 percent (in May 2021). Last month it was 2.19 percent, this month 2.02 percent. Steam had an average of 132 million monthly active users in 2021. If that number stayed about the same, SteamVR should have about 2.7 million users.

The SteamVR results of February 2023

The following statistics show the market share of VR headsets covered by Steam as of February 2022. Devices with less than half a percent market share are not listed.

VR users who only use Meta platforms and Viveport and do not have Steam installed or do not participate in the Steam survey are not included in the statistics, nor are users of Playstation VR 1 and 2 or Meta Quest and Pico headsets only used in standalone mode. As a result, SteamVR statistics reflect only a small portion of the total virtual reality market.

February 2023 Difference
Meta Quest 2 44,65 % + 0,39 %
Valve Index 17,00 % + 0,94 %
Oculus Rift S 11,96 % - 1,15 %
HTC Vive 6,20 % - 0,40 %
Oculus Rift 5,52 % - 0,14 %
Windows Mixed Reality 5,05 % - 0,13 %
Meta Quest 2,20 % - 0,09 %
HTC Vive Pro 1,35 % + 0,10 %
Pico 4 1,19 % + 0,22 %
HTC Vive Cosmos 1,13 % + 0,07 %
Pico Neo 3 0,66 % + 0,06 %
HTC Vive Pro 0,65 % - 0,02 %
SteamVR user base 2,07 % - 0,12 %

Valve Index saw the most growth in February. Perhaps the announcement of the SteamVR headset Bigscreen Beyond caused Index users to return to their devices. Meta Quest 2 and Pico 4 also gained ground.

The latter overtook the HTC Vive Cosmos to pass the one percent mark just under six months after launch. Since Pico 4 devices used via Virtual Desktop on a PC are registered as Quest 2 devices, the true percentage may be higher. Pico 4 is still not available in the largest VR market, the United States.

Playstation VR 2: a new haven for high-end VR enthusiasts?

The monthly Steam survey does not tell us how active VR headsets are used. The following statistics might give a rough idea.


In past years, these user numbers would reach a new plateau after each holiday season. An increase that did not materialize this time. Currently, this activity is at the level of 2020, before Half-Life: Alyx. One could conclude that the active user base has declined.

However, the statistics only cover gamers who play VR-exclusive titles. Those who play popular hybrid apps like VRChat or VR mods of 2D games are not included. We do not know how big this user base is.

A certain percentage of PC VR fans have probably switched to the Sony camp or are thinking about it. The Playstation VR 2 launched in February, and offers easy access to high-end VR and some exclusive VR games like Horizon Call of the Mountain, Resident Evil Village, and Gran Turismo 7, which you won't find on the PC.

With Valve seemingly out of the PC VR business for the time being, PC VR fans can only hope that some new PSVR 2 games will find their way to Steam.

It's not a foregone conclusion. One VR developer recently described Steam as "such an unwelcoming and rough dev environment that it legit scares off aspiring, or even well-established developers from even thinking about releasing a game on Steam."

Developers must adapt their games to a variety of headsets and controllers, some of which are outdated and hard to find, and ensure flawless support for Virtual Desktop and a wide range of PC hardware. They also have to deal with a "much more toxic review culture" and users who only buy heavily discounted games.

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Sources: Steam Hardware & Software Survey, Reddit