Today HTC confirmed both the release date and price for the HTC Vive VR headset. Vive has gone through a couple of delays at this point, with an April release date being stated back in December of last year. Not only has the April date been solidly confirmed this time, but the other key unknown, the price, has also been confirmed to be $799.

At first glance, a $799 price point seems awfully expensive. However, HTC and Valve are marketing the Vive as the "full experience" and note that the $799 package will include the headset, the two lighthouse base stations for room tracking, and two controllers. In comparison, the Oculus Rift does come in significantly cheaper at $599 for the headset, but the controllers for the Rift have also been delayed until the second half of 2016, and they will be an additional cost on top of the $599 price. With the Rift coming out in March and the Vive in early April, consumers looking to be early adopters of VR are going to have to decide on whether they think the additional $200 up front is worth it for the additional hardware that the Vive includes, or if they'll be betting on the Rift and waiting for its special controllers later in the year.

One other thing that HTC mentioned is something called Vive Phone Services. This is essentially a feature that integrates with your iOS or Android smartphone and allows you to receive and respond to texts and calls while using your Vive. You can also check upcoming calendar invites as well, ensuring that you don't forget about what you need to do in actual reality while enjoying a world of virtual reality

Of course, on top of the cost of a VR headset is the cost of a PC powerful enough to drive it. Valve is recommending that users have an NVIDIA GTX 970 or an AMD Radeon R9 290 at minimum. With that in mind, differences in cost on the order of a couple hundred dollars may be less significant than they seem when comparing the headsets themselves. The countdown on the HTC Vive product page is now just under 8 days, and when it gets to zero preorders for the Vive will open to the public. On top of the headset, base stations, and controllers, for a limited time those who purchase the Vive will get Job Simulator by Owlchemy labs, and Fantastic Contraption by Northway games.

Source: HTC

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  • jjj - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    The sad part is this means HTC is going under very soon. The M10 leaks are terrifying , makes you wish they would go back to the M7-M9 design. This products, they really need to go visit planet Earth, they certainly don't see to have ever been on that particular planet. HTC's shareholders should ask for the board to get their heads checked,and Valve....
  • T1beriu - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    ROFL right back at you, man, and welcome on planet Earth where state of the art technology is very expensive for the first few years.
  • JeffFlanagan - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    This is less expensive than some prior, far-less-capable HMDs were, and the game list is already longer than I'd expect.
  • jasonelmore - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    Yeah but look at the game list.. How many of those developers have you even heard of?
  • CoreDuo - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    I'd be more optimistic if it were any other company than HTC. They've been bleeding money for years, their smartphone business is cratering, and if the leaks are accurate they've been utterly left behind in terms of hardware design with a lacklustre flagship for 2016. Now they're hedging their bets on an bit of hardware that won't move many units both because of its upfront cost and the system requirements to do anything with it.
  • jasonelmore - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    Even if HTC goes under, valve owns the technology, they are licensing their setup to any oem who wants to make them. HTC just has the 1 year exclusivity.

    Source: CES Interview with Valve
  • Samus - Monday, February 22, 2016 - link

    You do realize this is not a smartphone, and a whole VR kit, right? They have virtually no competition which means if someone wants to get into VR (which will be a lot of people) then this is literally their only option unless you plan to just sit in a chair and look forward, in which case the Rift will be slightly cheaper.
  • shabby - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    2016 - where the life and death of vr occured.
  • willis936 - Sunday, February 21, 2016 - link

    Well you're p much wrong so
  • Lord of the Bored - Monday, February 22, 2016 - link

    2016: VR failed to go mainstream. Again. Get back to us in a decade. Again.

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