(Yicai Global) March 1 -- ByteDance's virtual reality equipment arm Pico has lowered its sales target by 50 percent this year from last year, according to an insider.
The VR headset maker expects to sell around 500,000 units this year, technology news outlet 36Kr reported yesterday, citing an insider. The company has not revealed its 2022 sales but insiders told The Paper that the figure was around 700,000 units.
The firm's general direction is to return to rational forecasting while reducing costs and investments. "It is more important to control losses than meaningless sales targets," the insider said. Pico has about 70,000 daily users and 100,000 weekly ones, per the same source.
ByteDance acquired Pico for CNY9 billion (USD1.3 billion) in September 2021 as the TikTok owner was expected to extend its reach to VR content to match the direction of Meta and Oculus. However, after that, VR and the metaverse have made way for new trends including artificial intelligence and ChatGPT.
On Feb. 13, Pico began downsizing, reducing its headcount by 15 percent to around 300 people. Almost all of them are sales and operations personnel, per the report.
The firm is rumored to subsidize sales. In 2022, Pico lowered the price of its VR product to about CNY2,500 (USD362). But a supply chain source said that the cost of a Pico 4 headset is more than CNY3,000. The retailer's website shows the price of the Pico 4 VR All-in-One 8+256G is currently CNY2,949.
Editor: Emmi Laine, Xiao Yi