On Monday, HTC announced a permanent Vive price reduction to $599, bringing the VR headset down from its original $799 launch price. The now-$599 standard HTC Vive kit includes the headset itself, two wireless controllers, two base stations, link box, earbuds, assorted connectors, and accessories. This move comes roughly a month after Oculus’ ‘Summer of Rift’ announcements that saw the Rift + Touch bundle permanently cut to $499.

Vive purchases come with complimentary copies of Google’s Tilt Brush, EverestVR, and Richie’s Plank Experience. In addition, HTC offers a one-month free trial to Viveport Subscription, where customers pay $6.99 a month for up to five titles to play. HTC also points out upcoming Vive exclusives, such as Fallout 4 VR and Doom VFR. In the background is natural compatibility with SteamVR, as Valve co-developed the Vive with HTC.

Currently, the Rift + Touch bundle is still available at its $399 summer sale price. However, the Rift + Touch bundle does require an additional $59 third sensor to achieve room-scale tracking, whereas the base Vive kit accomplishes this natively. In the same vein, the Vive price drop has not affected the separate $99 Deluxe Audio Strap. As noted last October, the Rift Touch controllers are more akin to “halves of gamepads”, as opposed to the Vive wands. Beyond our first looks with both the Vive and the Rift, both setups still emphasize different aspects of the VR experience despite offering similar capabilities.

While HTC has lowered the Vive’s price to $599, the Vive remains in pole position with respect to high-end VR market share. A few months earlier, research firm SuperData outlined its expectation that the Vive would outsell the Rift by 200,000 units. Now, despite the recent Rift price cuts, SuperData observes that HTC is still shipping more Vive units, although the ‘Summer of Rift’ sale did make up some ground. In the near future, HTC has the Daydream standalone Vive and Vive Knuckles in the pipeline, with the China-only Vive Standalone already shipping.

Nevertheless, price reductions for both Oculus Rift and HTC Vive bring high-end VR a step closer to widespread adoption. And for consumers, these continued price drops are the best news yet.

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Source: HTC

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  • mhampton - Thursday, August 24, 2017 - link

    Elite: Dangerous. Reply
  • NamelessPFG - Friday, August 25, 2017 - link

    Elite: Dangerous, DCS World, IL-2 Sturmovik: Battle of Stalingrad... you may not NEED a VR HMD to play any of those, but cockpit simming on a flat screen sucks by comparison, even with TrackIR to negate the head-tracking advantage. It's the difference between looking at a photo of a cockpit and actually being in it, with depth.

    So, no, don't tell me there aren't AAA games out for VR already, because they're right there if you just know where to look.

    Also, try playing something like GORN or Robo Recall without VR. You can't, and vaguely similar games like Die By The Sword and Trespasser from back in the '90s felt a hell of a lot kludgier by comparison without modern hand-tracked motion controllers.

    Honestly, I'd say I got my money's worth, and that was BEFORE the Rift got its massive price drops. Yeah, I'm a bit miffed about that, but such is life when I couldn't wait for something I've been waiting for since the '90s and the days of Virtuality, the Forte VFX1 and so forth. It's still cheaper than an extended outing at an arcade!
    Reply
  • zepi - Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - link

    In europe people report rift coming with two sensors. Isn't this the case? Reply
  • edzieba - Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - link

    New Rift package is Rift + Touch + 2x cameras in a single box, omitting the handheld remote and XB1 controller. Older package was Rift + camera + remote + controller, and Touch was a separate box with Touch + camera. Reply
  • Skaface - Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - link

    Well the price drop is great and all. But for me living in germany we still overpay for the HTC Vive way to much.

    Costs after cut:
    699€ on Steam and Alternate which is roughly 820$

    Cost before cut:
    899€ on Steam and Alternate which would be roughly 1.000$

    Compared to the Occulus Cost:

    449€ in Sale (528$)
    589€ after the Sale (~700$)

    So getting into the VR market with the HTC Vive as a german is not worth it unfortunally.
    Reply
  • HomeworldFound - Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - link

    For me the problem is ventilation. Each time I've tried these things for more than a couple of minutes, my glasses have steamed up and I couldn't see properly. Reply
  • NamelessPFG - Friday, August 25, 2017 - link

    Haven't tried a Vive, but my Rift is a real facesweat machine after playing something like SUPERHOT VR, GORN or The Thrill of the Fight for a few minutes. At least the lenses seem more resistant to fogging up than the Note 4 Gear VR.

    It makes me want to devise some kind of modified facial interface with a fan to keep things cool, even if it looks kludgy as hell.

    Problem is, ventilation runs counter to blocking out ambient light, so it might reduce immersion.
    Reply
  • oranos - Wednesday, August 23, 2017 - link

    they can't compete with oculus without cutting the price Reply
  • timecop1818 - Thursday, August 24, 2017 - link

    they don't need to, if you would read the article you'd notice that Vive is overselling occulus by 100s of thousands despite the sale.

    occulus is dead, has been since suckerberg grabbed it.
    Reply
  • edzieba - Thursday, August 24, 2017 - link

    The claims are from SuperData, who are to be considered about as accurate as a tabloid newspaper (slightly below The Onion): https://www.roadtovr.com/what-vr-headset-makers-no... Reply

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