Top Venture-Backed Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality Startups

September 3, 2015

2:00 pm

When it comes to augmented and virtual reality, Oculus isn't the only company in the industry that's managed to earn wide commercial success. Sure, Oculus may have been acquired by Facebook for a cool $2 billion last year, but overall augmented reality and virtual reality startups are gaining a lot of traction in the current market. According to the recently released Frontier Tech Report by CB Insights, augmented reality and virtual reality startups (outside of Oculus) have  have raised $1 billion since the beginning of 2014. The report looks at investment activity in AR/VR – looking at trends in funding, providing an analysis of what should be expected, and listing the top venture-backed augmented reality and virtual reality startups.


(CB Insights)

The report by CB Insights show that there was a significant boost in funding in Q4 of 2014 – with $623 million invested across twelve different deals (a large portion of which can be attributed to Magic Leap's $542 million round led by Google). In the following quarter, even more deals were made – with a total of 22 separate deals. And it seems that much of the funding in AR/VR technology goes towards hardware and commercial applications – something that differs vastly from both space startups and drone startups (both of which are also included in the Frontier Tech Report).


(CB Insights)

Unlike drone or space technology, augmented reality and virtual reality technology can provide consumer-level benefits in surprising ways. Whether that's providing a more comprehensive experience in the classroom or even removing the need to travel far distances, there's a lot of potential for AR/VR technology. At this year's SXSWi, Fantasmo Studios cofounder and CEO Jameson Detweiler shared with us his belief that virtual reality and augmented reality will become essential aspects of our lives. Indeed, even now, companies like Ford are utilizing AR/VR tech to easily bridge the disconnect between their global designers and engineers.

The Frontier Tech Report also looks at the major investors in the AR/VR space. Among them include Rothenberg Ventures, Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, and Intel Capital. You can check out which augmented reality and virtual reality startups have gotten the funding, below:

Magic Leap

Total Funding: $592 million

Developer of augmented reality technology.


Total Funding: $86.5 million

Visual sensing for connected devices and augmented reality.


Total Funding: $58.3 million

Develops a system for generating 3D digital models of physical spaces.


Total Funding: $47.2 million

Augmented reality visual browser for brands and publishers.

Leap Motion

Total Funding: $44.1 million

3D motion control and sensing hardware and software.


Total Funding: $35.4 million

Cinematic VR experience via proprietary hardware and software.

To learn more insights about the state of AR/VR startup funding, read the Frontier Tech Report from CB Insights.

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Ronald Barba was the previous managing editor of Tech.Co. His primary story interests include industry trends, consumer-facing apps/products, the startup lifestyle, business ethics, diversity in tech, and what-is-this-bullsh*t things. Aside from writing about startups and entrepreneurship, Ronald is interested in 'Doctor Who', Murakami, 'The Mindy Project', and fried chicken. He is currently based in New York because he mistakenly studied philosophy in college and is now a "writer". Tweet @RonaldPBarba.