It’s been a long wait, but HTC Vive was finally given a price and a launch date, respectively a price tag of $799, and April for still a slightly vague time frame. The release date might not be the most specific, but at the very least, it’s something. The price, however, is surprising.
- HTC Vive VR is set for pre-order on February 29th and will start shipping in April
- The price is set at $800, which is more expensive than its rival, Oculus Rift, set at $600
- The headset will arrive bundled with two games, Job Simulator: The 2050 and Fantastic Contraption
- HTC Vive VR recommended specs: Intel Core i5-4590 / AMD FX 8350 equivalent processor or better, Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 / AMD Radeon R9 290 or better, 4GB of RAM or more, an HDMI 1.4 / DisplayPort 1.2 video output or newer, one USB 2.0 port and Windows SP1 or later versions
The HTC Vive VR headset is developed by tech firm HTC and Valve. The virtual reality headset is considered to be the only true contender of Facebook-owned Oculus Rift. And yet, the elevated price alone might make some reluctant to try it out. Not all hope is lost though.
When the pricing of Oculus Rift was first announced at $599, the gaming community was in an uproar. It was considered too steep, and this was beyond the fact that Oculus Rift required a pretty powerful PC for smooth running. And yet, that didn’t stop the first shipment to be sold out in less than an hour. So, no matter the pricing, it still proved to have an astounding appeal to the public.
However, if anyone was expecting HTC Vive to be the cheaper option, they will be sorely disappointed. In fact, analysts estimated that the price of the VR headset will be at around $1,500 which was, thankfully, far off. Taking that into consideration, a price tag of $799 is not bad news at all. Now, HTC Vive has something to prove though, and show the gaming community why it’s worth more than Oculus Rift.
The VR headset will be available for pre-orders on February 29th, at 10 A.M. EST, and start shipping in April this year. It will arrive bundled with two wireless motion controllers, a link box to connect to your PC, earbuds, cables, and a pair of “Lighthouse” laser base stations for the purpose of tracking movements. In addition, just like the Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive VR will be coming with two games included, so you will have something to do once it’s in your hands.
The two titles included are Job Simulator: The 2050, where you will be placed in a world where computers have taken over most jobs and you’ll be an employee for other day-to-day tasks. That’s for those of you out there who have always dreamed on working in a fast food restaurant. The second title is Fantastic Contraption, during which the player will be tossed in a virtual world and required to build several gadgets and machines to accomplish certain goals. It’s definitely one that looks highly entertaining while playing with a group of your friends.
According to HTC, their virtual reality headset will be essentially the same as it was first introduced, with a few added improvements. The most significant one is the front-facing camera, which will allow users to see the outline of their living room. It could be very useful in understanding your perimeter of gameplay, stop you from stumbling into things, and, you know, avoid ending up on the floor.
In addition, the headgear has been given a more comfortable strap along with better accommodations for the user’s nose. It seems that HTC acknowledged that not everyone’s nose has the same shape, and moved to make sure all users will be satisfied. The headset itself has been given a bit of a polish, so it’s slightly shinier now, the built-in microphone has been improved, and the motors will be making much less noise.
There’s also a new feature called Vive Phone Services, which will allow the user to place calls, receive calls, or even use text messages while strapped on with the headset. That and a calendar and clock in case anyone loses track and gets lost in the immersive world created by virtual reality. This might be useful for those planning on bingeing for hours in the virtual world.
All in all, it seems that virtual reality will be an expensive ordeal for gamers, and time will only tell if the investment will be worth it.
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