Next to Oculus’ big $400 Summer of Rift sale, the $800 HTC Vive felt as if it was in another price bracket altogether. Now after a price drop to $600, the Vive feels very much back in the game compared to the Rift’s post-sale MSRP of $500. Despite the close timing, HTC says the price cut wasn’t a reaction to Oculus.
It’s been an awesome summer for those in VR land; the two leading PC headsets have now both gotten major price cuts, making high-end VR more accessible than ever.
Oculus’ $400 Summer Rift sale has been going on for six weeks now, and the company recently opted to extend it several weeks further. A little over two months ago, HTC told us why they opted not to lower their $800 price point to compete with the $600 Rift price that Oculus had set earlier in the year before the Summer sale. Now it seems HTC felt the time was right to drop their own pricing from $800 to $600, but say Oculus wasn’t a factor.
“This isn’t a reaction to Oculus. We’ve had a plan for quite some time that heading into our second holiday we’d adjust the price of Vive to start our ramp up,” an HTC spokesperson told Road to VR. “Now with Vive Tracker coming soon and Deluxe Audio Strap, customers can get each component [and the core system] for the price of the Vive originally. It’s about delivering more value, growing the base for VR, and allowing customers to take advantage of our new accessories.”
When we asked whether the price cut signified a new PC-based VR headset coming soon from the company, the answer was a firm negative.
“No. we expect the current generation Vive to be in market for the foreseeable future,” the spokesperson said. “Right now our focus is on continuing to improve Vive and keep building the ecosystem so that customers and developers can realize the full potential of VR. Outside of that, I can’t comment on future iterations.”
Both HTC and Oculus are suggesting that we won’t see the Rift 2 or Vive 2 for a while yet. Earlier this year, HTC’s China Regional President of Vive told us that he expected next-gen VR headsets to come in one to three year cycles. In May, Oculus’ Head of PC VR said that the Rift wouldn’t be superseded by a new version for “at least the next two years.”
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