This is Vive Focus, HTC's Stand-Alone VR Headset

By Tom Pritchard on at

The biggest problem with VR is the cost of entry, with the cheapest fancy headset costing around £600 in total (that's PS VR). Even mobile VR from Google and Samsung isn't particularly cheap, since you need to buy a pricey handset to strap to your face. So now we have the new trend of stand-alone VR headsets, i.e. the kind of thing you buy once and don't need any extra hardware to enjoy.

Oculus has the $200 (UK price TBA) Oculus Go, and now HTC has the Vive Focus which doesn't have a price yet.

As you can see it's a very vivid blue headset with a headheld controller, akin to those available with Oculus Go, Daydream, and Gear VR. Inside is an AMOLED display powered by a Snapdragon 835 processor, and on the front exterior are depth cameras. They are designed for something called world-scale inside-out tracking, which tracks your own movements and mirrors them in the virtual world.

That sounds similar to some of the sensors on Microsoft's Mixed Reality headsets - just without the whole 'bringing real objects into VR' thing.

HTC has promised that content will be available from the Vivepoint store, and that more will be available following the release of its Wave VR platform - a toolset that lets developers create and publish VR software that will work cross-platform. Both Vive Focus and Wave do, however, mean that HTC is ditching its plan to release a Daydream headset. At least for now.

Pricing and availability hasn't been announced yet, and all we know is that the Vive Focus will initially launch in China. Presumably it'll cost a lot less than a regular Vive headset, though the fancy guts make me assume it'll be a bit more expensive than Oculus's LCD-packing equivalent.

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