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posted by martyb on Tuesday March 20 2018, @06:14AM   Printer-friendly
from the next-best-thing-to-being-there dept.

HTC's Vive Pro virtual reality headset is now open for preorders. Resolution has been increased to 2800×1600 from 2160×1200, a microphone for noise cancellation analysis has been added, and it has two front-facing cameras instead of one, possibly allowing it to detect objects and hand movements:

The Vive Pro was announced early this year at CES, marking the first major upgrade to the Vive since its launch in 2016. It substantially increases the Vive's screen resolution, using two OLED displays that offer 1400 x 1600 pixels per eye compared to 1080 x 1200 on the current Vive. It also includes a variety of ergonomic changes, including built-in headphones and a head strap that tightens via dial instead of velcro. You could get these options via a kit for the original Vive, but now they're built into the core device, and we've found the hardware to be a distinct improvement over its predecessor.

The Vive Pro will not come with accessories at its launch price of $799, although existing Vive accessories can be used:

HTC's higher-resolution Vive Pro, first announced back in January, is setting new records for the price of a mass-market virtual reality headset. In pre-orders starting today ahead of planned April 5 shipments, customers will have to shell out $799 for the improved Vive Pro headset, a price that does not include any controllers or Lighthouse tracking base stations.

[...] HTC currently sells Vive controllers for $130 each and tracking base stations for $135 each. That means new Vive Pro customers will have to pay $1,330 for a higher-fidelity version of the same basic hardware included in the package for the original Vive (which is being reduced to $499 today, from the $599 price it has held since last April).

Original Submission

Related Stories

HTC: Death of VR Greatly Exaggerated 22 comments

HTC has hit back against claims of declining VR sales figures:

The blog post in particular references a report from Digital Trends which talks about VR sales figures from Amazon, and proceeds to point out a number of ways which the data presented could be misleading.

Several points made by HTC Vive are ones that have also been addressed by VRFocus, as seen in an article about the modern VR cycle, and some comments in the weekly VR vs. article. HTC Vive were not pulling punches right from the very start, evening saying in the introduction: "Analyst reports are in and apparently, it's curtains for Virtual Reality (VR). Pardon us if we're not heeding the alarms. News of the so-called death of VR comes once a year and is greatly exaggerated."

From there, the blog post proceeds in a point-by-point fashion, discussing how early consumer VR was largely driven by smartphone-based devices such as the Samsung Gear VR and Google Cardboard. Not only have these devices been superseded by standalone units like the Oculus Go, which offer a better visual experience, but the promotional offers which were available for phone launches have now long since passed. HTC Vive also point out that PC-based VR companies are yet to release any solid sales figures, and that much of the growth of premium VR has been centered around location-based VR centres, something which the Digital Trends report did not address.

Vive blog post.

Related: HTC's Vive Pro to Launch on April 5
Facebook Launches Oculus Go, a $200 Standalone VR Headset
VirtualLink Consortium Announces USB Type-C Specification for VR Headsets

Original Submission

Facebook Announces a New Standalone VR Headset: Oculus Quest; HTC Releases Vive Wireless Adapter 8 comments

Oculus Quest, a fully wireless VR headset, shipping spring 2019 for $399

Facebook used its latest virtual reality conference, the fifth annual Oculus Connect, to finally confirm retail plans for its most ambitious standalone VR product yet: the Oculus Quest. Originally known by its prototype name, Oculus Santa Cruz, the Quest will ship in spring 2019 for $399.

In terms of the sales pitch, this is the Oculus holy grail: a wireless, hand-tracked, "six degrees of freedom" VR system with apparently legitimate 3D power and no required PC or phone.

The headset will include two bundled handheld controllers, and more than 50 games will be available at launch. The headset has a 1600×1440 per eye resolution (3200×1440 total resolution), compared to 1280×1440 per eye for Oculus Go or 1440×1600 per eye for HTC's Vive Pro, and has 64 GB of internal storage.

Vive's wireless adapter gives the best VR experience lots of money can buy:

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  • (Score: 2) by drussell on Tuesday March 20 2018, @09:33AM (10 children)

    by drussell (2678) on Tuesday March 20 2018, @09:33AM (#655309) Journal

    HTC's Vive Pro virtual reality headset is now open for preorders.

    I don't believe I could possibly care less...

    • (Score: 2) by takyon on Tuesday March 20 2018, @09:40AM (9 children)

      by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {}> on Tuesday March 20 2018, @09:40AM (#655310) Journal

      I care to see how many people splash $800 down on another generation of tethered, low FOV, and dependent on external tracking headsets. That are still at 90 Hz and a relatively low resolution.

      [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 []
      • (Score: 2) by mmh on Tuesday March 20 2018, @01:30PM

        by mmh (721) on Tuesday March 20 2018, @01:30PM (#655354)

        I'll be one of them! I love my Vive, and have been eagerly awaiting the release of the Vive Pro.

      • (Score: 2) by quacking duck on Tuesday March 20 2018, @05:19PM (3 children)

        by quacking duck (1395) on Tuesday March 20 2018, @05:19PM (#655501)

        I'm not in the market for a Vive Pro, but this comic is relevant: []

        We're still in the early days of affordable home VR, so VR will remain a niche for at least a few more years. But the future is promising. Unlike the 3D TV fad, I want VR to succeed.

      • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Tuesday March 20 2018, @06:15PM (2 children)

        by Freeman (732) on Tuesday March 20 2018, @06:15PM (#655532) Journal

        What would you suggest as an alternative that can be purchased, now? Is there anything that should be released within the next 2-3 months that would be better?

        Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
        • (Score: 2) by takyon on Tuesday March 20 2018, @06:30PM (1 child)

          by takyon (881) <{takyon} {at} {}> on Tuesday March 20 2018, @06:30PM (#655544) Journal

          Use Cardboard if you have a smartphone, $200 Oculus Go if you don't mind Facebook, or $400 Lenovo Mirage Solo. Both of those are expected to launch in May.

          [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 []
          • (Score: 2) by mmh on Wednesday March 21 2018, @09:08PM

            by mmh (721) on Wednesday March 21 2018, @09:08PM (#656342)

            cell-phone based vr is a joke compared to anything powered by PC hardware. Quick list of limitations, but nowhere near complete:

            • Software is gimmicky
            • Graphics are crappy and can't provide a smooth 90FPS per-eye resulting in choppiness and for people prone to motion sickness makes the experience much more barf-tastic.
            • tracking has a noticeable "lag" and often get confused as to which way you actually moved.

            If you're judging a Vive based off of experience with Cardboard of Samsung VR, you're really doing yourself a disservice. It'd be like judging sex based off an experience with a blow-up sex doll.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 21 2018, @10:17PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 21 2018, @10:17PM (#656364)

        I'm still waiting for a VR headset more akin to the one in Johnny Mnemonic, where he can take a random collection of crap off the store shelves and put together a complete VR hacking system in under 10 minutes.

        Where are the VR headsets for those of us who want to recreate THAT?

        Also, more linux support please.