HTC unveils new standalone VR headset in Beijing

Engadget

To broaden its VR reach, HTC has launched a brand new standalone headset called the Vive Focus.

Software developers might also be interested to learn that HTC has announced a partnership with Unity Technologies to enable the one-click publishing of VR content on to Viveport for both PC and mobile developers. The Taiwanese manufacturer has stated that it is looking to attract a mainstream audience, and considering Oculus' $199 standalone VR headset is set to arrive sometime next year, it'll be interesting to see where the Vive Focus slots in. "Now you can essentially do most of the things that you could do on a high-end machine on a standalone". This preempted the release of a standalone Daydream VR headset, forcing HTC to cut its losses and focus on the market where it has an advantage.

HTC said more than 100 developers are working on content for the Focus, but it didn't reveal any specifics.

Coming to the features of the headset, the key highlight of it is that it runs on Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 and comes with a high-res AMOLED screen.

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Separately, HTC has issued an invitation to VR and augmented-reality developers worldwide to participate in its Viveport Developer Awards, which are to recognize creativity and innovation in the field, as the company continues its efforts to build its own VR ecosystem. "We still have a great relationship with Google, but will not be bringing a standalone device to the western markets on Daydream", an HTC spokesperson told TechCrunch. The initial focus will be on the Chinese market. With its six-degree-of-freedom (6DoF) support, the headset is said to offer "world-scale" tracking.

At the Vive Developer Conference 2017 event in China earlier today, HTC made a couple of important announcements.

HTC is yet to announce a price or release date for the Vive Focus, but the product will launch in China first before hopefully heading to the USA and beyond. The HTC Vive Focus also has a much cleaner look because of the reduced number of sensors that it needs in order to function, as compared to the HTC Vive.

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