HTC plans to release a mobile VR headset by the end of 2017

Guy wearing the HTC Vive VR

Following another dismal earnings quarter and the reveal of its upcoming U Ultra smartphone, it seems HTC has plans to continue shifting its focus towards virtual reality.

In a recent interview, HTC CFO Chia-lin Chang told CNET the company plans to release a mobile virtual reality headset by the end of 2017. Similar to Daydream View and Gear VR, the virtual reality headset will utilize use a smartphone as its display, according to Chang.

The Vive, HTC’s current high-end virtual reality offering, is an expensive device, coming in at $1149 CAD, and requires an even more pricey PC to power it. In the interview, Chang says that HTC has “a good plan in terms of combining mobility with VR,” and that the company’s upcoming headset is not just “a phone slapped into a headset.”

So while HTC’s upcoming mobile VR headset may share similarities with Daydream View and Gear VR, perhaps the company is planning a more high-end approach to what it views as its more affordable VR headset offering. It’s unclear, however, exactly how HTC intends to differentiate the headset from its competitors.

Price is one of the main obstacles companies like HTC and Oculus need to surpass before VR finds mainstream success. Current, pricey, high-end headsets require a tethered connection to a PC via an awkward, bulky cable. On the other hand, lower-end, more affordable and portable VR options that rely on the power of a smartphone, often result in a lacklustre experience and aren’t capable of creating the same level of immersion as tethered devices like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.

Source: CNET

Via: Tech Crunch