GameStop confirmed plans today to sell the MergeVR smartphone VR headset in hundreds of its retail stores, alongside the HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift, Sony's PlayStation VR and Samsung's GearVR headsets.
The fact that many GameStop stores will have dedicated VR sections that feature (at least) 5 different headsets by the end of the year suggests the company is betting big on VR becoming a big deal.
That's well in line with comments made by company chief Paul Raines last year, when he told Fortune the company was then cutting deals with (just 3) VR headset manufacturers to set up in-store demos of VR headsets and games.
"Analysts believe there could be 10 million VR users by the end of 2016, and there are hardware forecasts of $30 billion by 2020," Raines said. "We’re going to be the destination for VR."
Given that GameStop is expecting a 10 percent drop in hardware sales this year, it has good reason to try and juice sales of VR headsets and peripherals. Of course, earlier this year Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey cautioned Gamasutra readers to "be realistic" about some of the more optimistic outlooks on the burgeoning VR market.
"Don't believe the most optimistic things the analysts say," Luckey said. "Especially when those analysts don't actually know anything about VR."