Valve/HTC Vive announce $799 Launch Price, Preorder Date

htcviveThe Valve/HTC joint virtual reality hardware project, the Vive, was announced yesterday for consumers with a $799 launch price. Preorders will start February 29th at 10am Eastern Standard Time. The Vive comes with two handheld controllers, two columns for sensing, the main external processing unit and the headset.

The fact that the Vive is just $200 more than the Oculus really means that they are neck and neck (remember the Oculus does not come with its handheld controllers, those will be launched separately for an unknown price).

Here at the office, we had assumed the Vive would be launching at a much higher price point with the sheer volume of hardware involved.

I had a chance to use the Vive Pre2 this weekend and am more than excited about its capabilities. I found that the wall detection feature was incredibly useful, as it projected a holodeck grid into my software whenever I came close to a wall. The interesting thing is that this is a natural give/take vocabulary exchange with no words whatsoever. I simply backed up, readjusted and started again. It is truly an elegant solution. The frame rate and clarity of picture was quite good, and the headset was comfortable and not taxing to wear for long periods of time.

I believe that the Vive, at this price point, is going to be very successful if they can attract people with exclusive software that users could not get on the Oculus Rift. Left 4 Dead VR, anyone?

Are you going to get a Vive? Let us know, in the comments below!

Full press release follows:

HTC reveals complete Vive system at Mobile World Congress, available for pre-order from 29th February 2016

Mobile World Congress, Barcelona, February 21, 2016 – HTC, a pioneer in innovative, smart technologies, in partnership with Valve® today unveiled the consumer edition of its ViveTM virtual reality system. Continuing to build upon the Vive’s exhaustive list of features, this complete Vive system, powered by Steam®VR, introduces yet another new technological innovation – Vive Phone Services – once again setting a new standard in virtual reality.

Enabling you to stay connected to the real world without exiting the virtual world, Vive Phone Services demonstrates the ability to combine both realities without losing touch of either. By allowing you to receive and respond to both incoming and missed calls, get text messages and send quick replies, and check upcoming calendar invites directly through the headset, it creates a hybrid reality opening up a whole new world of possibilities for both consumers and businesses.

Taking Vive one step further, with refreshed branding and an updated headstrap, the Vive consumer edition builds upon the innovative features that were introduced into the Vive Pre. These include updated wireless controllers with haptic feedback and dual stage triggers, a front facing camera that blends physical elements into the virtual world, a redesigned headstrap that offers greater stability and balance and an improved visual system with brighter displays to give a deeper sense of immersion.

Priced at US$799, for a limited time the consumer edition will also ship with two fully fledged VR experiences to get you started in the VR world:
· Job Simulator: The 2050 Archives by Owlchemy Labs: In a tongue-in-cheek world where robots have replaced all human jobs, step into the ‘Job Simulator’ to learn what it was like ‘to job’.

· Fantastic Contraption by Northway Games in collaboration with Radial Games: Imagine walking around a grassy island floating in the sky, building a machine the size of a horse with your own hands, and then watching it roll out into the world.

But it’s not just about gaming. In addition to these launch titles, HTC is working with developers to foster the creation of content that spans multiple sectors including entertainment, retail, education, design, healthcare and automotive.

“From the beginning, Vive has been at the forefront of virtual reality, with HTC pioneering several ground breaking technologies,” comments Cher Wang, chairwoman and CEO, HTC. “Since announcing Vive this time last year, we have worked tirelessly with Valve to deliver the best VR experience on the market; winning multiple awards; and receiving critical acclaim from media, consumers and the industry. With the Vive consumer edition we are now able to realize our ultimate vision of bringing Vive into homes around the globe so that people can experience immersive virtual reality in a way that fires the imagination and truly changes the world.”

Pricing, Updates and Availability

The Vive consumer edition will be available to pre-order from 29th February, with pre-order fulfilment and full commercial availability starting in early April. Priced at US$799, the Vive is the first complete VR solution, including two wireless VR controllers, room scale movement sensors, and an HMD featuring a built in camera and phone, plus the two VR titles. The integration of SteamVR into the bundle ensures that all Vive equipment is kept up-to-date with the latest features.

– Ends –

Notes to Editors
1. Pre-orders will start at 10am Eastern Time on 29th February.

2. Pricing may vary by country for non-USD purchases and additional fees may apply,

including tax and shipping costs.

About HTC
HTC Corporation aims to bring brilliance to life. As a global innovator in smart mobile devices and technology, HTC has produced award-winning products and industry firsts since its inception in 1997, including the critically acclaimed HTC One and HTC Desire lines of smartphones. The pursuit of brilliance is at the heart of everything we do, inspiring best-in-class design and game-changing mobile and virtual reality experiences for consumers around the world. HTC is listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE: 2498).

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HTC, Vive and the HTC logo are the trademarks of HTC Corporation. All other names of companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.