Jessica Powers | Feb 27, 2023

Thanks to a groundswell of virtual reality companies in recent years, VR has made some great strides and found a home in a variety of industries. The global VR and AR market is expected to reach $454 billion by 2030, along with the estimated creation of 23 million VR-related jobs.

Virtual Reality Companies

  • Meta
  • Microsoft
  • Samsung
  • Supernatural
  • Vicarious Surgical
  • Talespin
  • Virtualitics
  • AppliedVR
  • WEVR
  • Unity 

Sure, VR is still widely considered a gamer technology, and a niche one at that, but it’s also proven a valuable tool in e-commerce, retail, medical training, employee development, technology and non-gaming entertainment. It might even help treat your anxiety.

“The largest companies in the world have invested billions of dollars in VR — and they did that well before a single device had been officially sold in stores,” Wired correspondent Peter Rubin wrote in his 2018 book Future Presence: How Virtual Reality Is Changing Human Connection, Intimacy, and the Limits of Ordinary Life. “Why the optimism? It’s not just because VR can create the coolest video games we’ve ever seen; it promises to upend every industry you can name.”

We’ve compiled 33 virtual reality companies that are making the VR dream a reality.


33 Virtual Reality (VR) Companies to Know



Location: Waltham, Massachusetts

How it’s innovating VR: Vicarious Surgical is reinventing surgical technology and capabilities to provide patients with better outcomes and less risk or invasiveness when undergoing abdominal procedures. The system features two components: the patient cart, featuring two robotic arms with exceptional reach, mobility and camera-enabled visibility, and the surgeon console that drives the robot and is controllable via a 3D screen, a VR headset and the system’s proprietary software. Although the technology is still being developed, the Vicarious surgical system is expected to have 28 sensors per arm and will require just a single 1.2cm incision.


Location: San Francisco, California

How it’s innovating VR: Unity has expanded beyond the traditional gaming industry with VR as it has found footing with automakers, who use its virtual reality imaging as a prototyping tool, as well as filmmakers, who employ it to combine various production tasks. Still, it remains a powerhouse in gaming, with its development engine purportedly laying the groundwork for half of all mobile games and more than half of all virtual or augmented reality content, including Pokémon Go. Among its VR standouts is Coco VR, Pixar’s first foray into standalone virtual reality filmmaking, made in collaboration with Magnopus.


Location: Fully Remote 

How it’s innovating VR: Sandbox VR offers immersive virtual reality experiences in locations across the United States, Europe and Asia. Players wear gear such as headsets, goggles and vests, and can choose from six experiences, each of which are designed and developed by Sandbox VR’s staff and can accommodate six players at once.


Location: Bellevue, Washington

How it’s innovating VR: Samsung is another major tech company that has jumped into the VR industry. In 2015, the company released Gear VR powered by Meta Quest. Samsung’s VR products are specifically designed to be compatible with Galaxy mobile devices and strive to make VR easily accessible. Gear VR products allow users to connect with friends in VR games and share 360 video.


Location: New York, New York

How it’s innovating VR: Transfr is an edtech company using virtual reality to train professionals in essential skills. Wearing VR headsets and wielding handheld controllers, trainees immerse themselves in simulations like construction sites, warehouses and airfields, where they practice the job and hear feedback from instructors. Once trainees pass the VR-based training, they’re ready to learn from instructors in the real world.


Location: Sunnyvale, California

How it’s innovating VR: Anyone who has ever house-hunted knows there’s often a very long gap between getting early info on a prospective property and actually stepping foot inside, especially with a long-distance move. This led to the blossoming of 3D imaging tours in residential real estate. Matterport’s approach incorporates computer vision to “read” complex layouts. Once a space is mapped, users also have the option of a VR tour that’s even more immersive and truer-to-life than a computer stream.


Location: San Diego, California  

How it’s innovating VR: Qualcomm is known for its work with semiconductors, 5G and wireless technologies, but it also hopes to influence the way we approach VR. The company is striving to create fully immersive mobile VR that users can easily transport with them wherever they are. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR1 is an enhanced extended reality headset and platform that allows users to have a variety of display options with hardware-accelerated composition, 3D overlays as well as and support for graphics APIs including OpenGL, OpenCL and Vulkan.


Location: Culver City, California

How it’s innovating VR: Dreamscape’s VR gaming experiences combine motion capture, computer programming and virtual reality technology to track people’s full bodies and render them as characters in virtual worlds. The Dreamscape room offers free-roam VR adventures, each with a strong focus on narrative and wonder (think a galactic zoo, underwater exploration and an Indiana Jones-esque adventure). Everyone in the room with you shows up as an avatar, so expect a higher-than-average sense of interactivity.


Location: Menlo Park, California

How it’s innovating VR: Any discussion of VR must begin with Meta, which famously acquired Oculus for $2 billion in 2014, thereby igniting the second major firestorm of VR hype. It launched the Oculus Rift headset in 2016 — the so-called Year of Virtual Reality, which also saw the release of HTC Vive and PlayStation VR. Since then, Meta’s Quest headset has opened up VR gaming options with dozens of games and apps.


Location: Redmond, Virginia 

How it’s innovating VR: In 2017, Microsoft released its Mixed Reality line of products. The company offers both headsets and VR controls as well as PCs that are compatible with VR equipment. The HoloLens 2 uses holographics to guide players through tasks and is equipped with various enterprise applications. Users can also build custom applications with Microsoft Azure.


Location: Los Angeles, California

How it’s innovating VR: Supernatural offers users a unique home workout solution that combines full-body exercises, enthralling experiences and expert coaches within a single platform. Created for use on the Meta Quest VR headset, Supernatural workouts allow users to get their heart pumping while being immersed within realistic environments like Machu Picchu or an Ethiopian volcano, with workouts ranging from cardio to meditation and yoga. Supernatural offers monthly subscriptions and workouts that can be downloaded for use on Meta Quest headsets.


Location: Pasadena, California

How it’s innovating VR: Virtualitics provides organizations with a rapidly deployable suite of AI-enabled products that preprocesses and fuses data sources to build predictive models and make data visible and understandable to all users. The 3D visualization platform allows for exploration and collaboration in either desktop or virtual reality environments, with advanced machine learning techniques.


Location: Redmon, Washington

How it’s innovating VR: Project Archer is an augmented reality studio that is developing immersive AR experiences in the retail space. The company’s team of engineers, designers, innovators and creators combine diverse data streams with personalized information to make shopping experiences more productive and entertaining at the same time.


Location: Fully Remote

How it’s innovating VR: “Performing live” takes on a whole new meaning with the tools of Stage11, a VR company reinventing the way music artists interact with their fans. Harnessing the potential of gaming technology and virtual reality, Stage11 is empowering artists to create immersive experiences in the metaverse.


Location: Culver City, California

How it’s innovating VR: Talespin offers access to immersive learning content, a skills insights platform and a content creation tool in equal parts. The platform leverages the power of extended reality to accelerate skills and learning development in workplaces, helping programmatically transfer knowledge and build employee experience through roleplay and job simulation before their first day on the job. The software brings employees and managers into virtual sales cold calls, performance reviews and other stressful on-the-job situations.


Location: Van Nuys, California

How it’s innovating VR: Applied VR was founded based on 30 years of academic research, working to determine the most effective ways to work virtual reality into the healthcare process. The VR platform uses immersive therapeutics to help users prevent, process and manage chronic pain. The groundbreaking tech has been utilized by over 200 hospitals and 60,000 patients, according to the company’s website.


Location: Austin, Texas

How it’s innovating VR: Phaser Lock produces video games and cinematic experiences for use on various VR platforms, mixing animation with compelling stories to create brand-new worlds. The developer’s flagship game is Final Approach, a simulator that allows players to utilize naval ships, fly airplanes and manage an airport. The studio has since released a sequel to Final Approach called Final Assault and more games are expected in the future.


Location: Los Angeles, California

How it’s innovating VR: Lucid Sight has created several of VR games including MLB Champions, Crypto Space Commander and Z-Strike. The company acquired Colyseus in 2021, empowering Lucid Sight with an open-source multiplayer solution built on Node.js and JavaScript. Colyseus Arena allows game creators to build multiplayer games VR, PC and console games without networking expertise.


Location: Austin, Texas

How it’s innovating VR: Owlchemy Labs is a VR studio emphasizing design and delight throughout its products to create engaging user experiences. The company’s best known game is Job Simulator, released for use with the PlayStation VR headset to emulate cubicle busywork. The game showcases the studio’s counterintuitive wit and has received a strong wave of press. Owlchemy Labs is currently developing a multiplayer VR game with hand-tracking technology that doesn’t require handheld devices.


Location: Los Angeles, California

How it’s innovating VR: Wevr Virtual Studio is a game and interactive film development tool that creators can use to store, build and edit their VR projects all in one platform. For more than a decade, Wevr has been releasing projects with everyone from Reggie Watts to Run the Jewels to Deepak Chopra. The company also worked with technophile blockbuster director Jon Favreau to create a virtual-reality film.


Location: New York, New York

How it’s innovating VR: Spectator sports are a hand-in-athletic-glove fit for virtual reality. LiveLike has presented the Super Bowl, the FIFA World Cup and other marquee matchups through its VR platform. Along with the live game feed, it adds features like Jumbotron feeds, live stats, multiple movable vantage points and an in-the-stands sense of immersion — everything except the smell of spilled beer. With former NBA commissioner David Stern among the company's investors, LiveLike has also trained its eye on mobile, which ups the platform’s social capabilities.


Location: Austin, Texas

How it’s innovating VR: Working with VR, AR and 360-degree video, Subvrsive has developed videos and experiences for the likes of Amazon, Google, MTV and Walmart. Subvrsive’s VR portfolio includes a decentralized training portal to train new hires at Simi Winery in California. It also includes an educational game that demonstrates how Roblox can be used to create brand experiences. 


Location: Austin, Texas

How it’s innovating VR: One downside to VR is that you’re limited by your physical space. Virtuix built a workaround to this with the Omni, a 360-degree treadmill that lets gamers run through virtual lands while staying put in a real one. Virtuix is known for its Omni “arenas” made for immersive venues, but it is also developing beta versions of Omni One for home use.

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Location: Marina Del Rey, California

How it’s innovating VR: One way to puncture the fear that VR games encourage isolation is to socialize with them. Survios — the VR game publisher behind Creed: Rise to Glory and Raw Data — also operates its own brick-and-mortar arcade in California, where gamers can gather and play various titles. There’s even a weekly After Dark night, which caters to young professionals who might be intimidated by VR’s perceived early-adopters-only vibe. It’s part of a larger trend toward VR arcades, which give dabblers a chance to deep their feet in.


Location: San Francisco, California

How it’s innovating VR: Bigscreen allows users to watch movies and sports, play games, collaborate for work or just hang out with friends in one of 20-plus virtual environments. The VR environments include movie theaters, office settings and even campfires. You can stream your screen directly into your chosen VR room or select content from the Bigscreen TV. The company also makes compact VR glasses that are custom made to the shape of customers’ faces.

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Location: New York, New York

How it’s innovating VR: Decorilla uses the 3D room modeling concept, but applies it to home decor. Customers looking to give their space a facelift can choose from a range of furniture and decor options based on their aesthetic, budget and room size. Then a detailed 3D rendering — which can also be viewed via headset in hyper-realistic virtual reality — gives them an even greater preview of their prospective makeover before they take the leap.


Location: Culver City, California 

How it’s innovating VR: Framestore’s VR studio creates immersive virtual reality experiences for theme parks and specially designed headsets for National Geographic.  You may have also seen the studio’s digital handiwork in movies like Spider-Man: Far from Home and in TV shows like Black Mirror. The company brings that same visual pizzazz to VR too, as it built the Fantastic Beasts experience for Google's Daydream headset and a virtual-reality tour of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.


Location: Boise, Idaho

How it’s innovating VR: From the Power Pad to Wii Fit, fitness gaming has a long history, but it tends to be “active” only relative to the most sedentary joystick jockeying. Black Box VR plays a different game, setting up shop inside gyms and using virtual-reality missions to simultaneously distract and encourage gym-goers during hardcore resistance training and high-intensity cardio reps.


Location: Los Angeles, California

How it’s innovating VR: 8i base jumps into the uncanny valley. The company’s studio uses volumetric 3D image capture to create preposterously lifelike hologram versions of human beings, which can then be integrated into virtual, augmented or mixed reality worlds. Industries like education and communication can benefit from 8i’s technology as real people can be brought into digital spaces. 8i has been used by outlets like Google, MTV, Sony and TIME, according to its website.


Location: Gates Mills, Ohio

How it’s innovating VR: Most people probably think that neurosurgeons should have as much practice as possible before slicing into actual brains. Surgical Theater is backing this belief by providing virtual training platforms for doctors to rehearse ultra-complex neurosurgical procedures. It’s part of a growing ecosystem of companies that harness VR’s promise as a tool for both healthcare and a training space.


Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico

How it’s innovating VR: Meow Wolf is a media-captivating arts collective that stages outlandish exhibits which are part interactive installation, part psychedelic sensory overload, part theme park. In 2017, the collective began its work to implement VR into its various projects. Its exhibit “The Atrium” combines haptics and VR to create an interactive storytelling experience. Meow Wolf has several permanent installations in the United States as well as pop-up-style events and projects.


Location: Santa Barbara, California

How it’s innovating VR: WorldViz offers VR products and software for training and collaboration across industries, including education, military training, healthcare and academic research. The company’s products range from projection VR for group immersion to headsets and eye-tracking software to VizBox, a portable VR system that can be used anywhere. Businesses and universities can use WorldViz to create a VR lab where researchers can conduct experiments and observations. One VR lab at Stanford University is used to study how people interact with one another in immersive VR simulations and video games.


Location: Chicago, Illinois 

How it’s innovating VR: Immersive Touch is another example of how VR impacts the healthcare industry. The company’s platform converts 2D medical images into 3D spatial models, enhancing surgical planning and training. It also allows users to train with specific equipment and surgery techniques, as well as use custom, patient-specific anatomy.

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