After a very long wait, HTC Vive finally has a price set at $799, which is expectedly more expensive than the Oculus Rift. Most experts saw it coming, though they elevated the estimated price by almost double than it actually is. So, in essence, it’s good news considering most believed HTC and Valve’s virtual reality headset would be priced at around $1,500.
HTC Vive is considered to be the only serious competition Oculus Rift has on the VR market. Of course, 2016 will be just be the inception of the industry, with others likely following with their own headsets. Names such as Apple and Google come to mind, both of which showed vast interest in the market. In fact, both have been rumored to be working on their very own VR headgear.
However, for the first half of the year, it’s unlikely that there will be anyone else tackling the industry. The major players are Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR. Facebook-owned Oculus priced their headset at $599, which drew out some unpleasant reaction from enthusiast who were eager to purchase it. Of course, that didn’t stop the first shipment available for pre-order to sell out in under an hour.
For anyone hoping that HTC Vive will be the less expensive option, they will be sorely disappointed. The VR headset is actually a full $200 more expensive. It does come with a few interesting features that could make up for the difference. Users will be receiving the actual headset, two motion controllers, and “Lighthouse” laser base stations for the purpose of tracking.
First off, HTC announced that their headset is not that much different than how it was when first presented. However, they have made some improvements. The first and foremost is the front-facing camera. Users will be able to see their surroundings in real life should they choose it. It will be particularly helpful if you don’t want to bump into things and end up on the floor.
Second, the straps are much more comfortable to wear, with an added security to keep the user’s position in place and several options to accommodate their nose. Yes, HTC acknowledges not everyone’s nose is the same. The VR headset has also been given a bit of a polish, so it will look a little shinier than you might remember. It’s Bluetooth enabled and has access to Phone Services. That means that if you get lost in the immersive world of VR, you could still access messages and receive calls.
HTC Vive will arrive bundled with two games, Job Simulator: The 2050 and Fantastic Contraption. The headset will be available for pre-order on February 29th and will start shipping in April of this year.
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