Smartphone vendor HTC Corp (宏達電) is likely to price its first virtual reality headset — the HTC Vive — at about US$1,500, foreign brokerages said yesterday.
While HTC, based in New Taipei City’s Xindian District (新店), has announced that pre-order sales for the HTC Vive are scheduled to open on Feb. 29, the company has remained tight-lipped on the pricing of its VR gear, which it hopes will create an alternative sales source amid the escalating competition in the global smartphone market.
The HTC Vive is scheduled to hit store shelves in April.
Foreign brokerages said that the HTC Vive is likely be more expensive than its VR counterparts, as the headset’s advanced spatial recognition features and its wireless controllers would allow consumers to have a level of immersion not seen in previous VR headsets.
Samsung Electronics Co on Monday launched its Gear VR in Taiwan with a price tag of NT$3,490 (US$103.6).
Many market observers have said Samsung’s VR gadget could attract local entry-level users who just want to experience the new technology for the first time.
The Oculus Rift, which has investment from Google Inc, has started pre-order sales with a price tag of US$599.
The Sony PlayStation VR is expected to be priced at US$1,125.
Some netizens in Taiwan said that they have doubts about the popularity of the HTC Vive given the expected cost, which they said would be too pricey for many young Taiwanese, but others said local consumers should support HTC and recognize the firm’s research and development achievements.
Foreign brokerages said that the company would probably not sell more than 1 million units of HTC Vive this year.
The HTC Vive, which was jointly developed with US video game supplier Valve, was unveiled at the Mobile World Congress show in March last year.
The headset is equipped with tracked controllers that allow wearers to inspect objects from every angle and interact with their surroundings.
HTC has invested more than NT$300 million in WEVR, a US VR content developer, to boost its VR development.
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