After nearly two months since the official launch at the CES 2018, the HTC Vive Pro virtual reality headset is finally up for pre-orders. HTC has set a steep asking price of $799 for its new high-end VR headset. Besides, it has cut down the retail price of its year-old HTC Vive to just $499.
The HTC Vive Pro is one of the costliest VR headsets available in the market. The $799 (Rs 52,000) premium headset will be shipping globally soon after the pre-order periods end on April 5. The skywards price tag of the new Vive Pro clearly indicates HTC’s plan towards capturing the emerging VR market. With Facebook backed Oculus increasing its focus towards the budget standalone VR market, it was quite natural for HTC to bank all its money on the premium segment.
As evident from the specs, the HTC Vive Pro is primarily aimed at the gaming enthusiasts and professionals. The most significant change in the new VR headgear is the presence of sharper OLED displays with a combined resolution of 2,880 x 1,660p. The old generation HTC Vive, on the other hand, came with 2,160 x 1,200p display. Ergonomically, the HTC Vive Pro is a markedly improved product. It comes with a redesigned strap and built-in headphones.
Incidentally, HTC is yet to announce a price for the full Vive Pro kit. Currently, only the headset is available for sale, and users purchasing the same by June 3 will get six months of HTC’s Viveport subscription for free. With that said, existing Vive users can use their lighthouse tracking beacons and controllers with the Vive Pro. Users looking to jump into the Vive territory would, however, need to wait for HTC to launch a full kit before making a purchase decision.
HTC’s new Vive Wireless Adapter too is yet to see the light of the day. It would have been great if the Taiwanese firm had bundled in the accessory along with its new premium VR headset. The vertiginous $799 price of the Vive Pro indeed calls for a wireless virtual reality experience. Alas, that’s not going to happen, at least in the near future. The adapter was initially unveiled at the mega-show in Las Vegas earlier this year with the aim of reducing wire clutter arising from the PC connected to the headset. The Vive Wireless Adapter is expected to go on sale somewhere around the third quarter of this year.
The HTC Vive Pro, isn’t a direct successor to the original Vive by any means. It’s meant to act as markedly premium VR offering from HTC for consumers demanding an improved experience in lieu of lot more money.