CES 2016: HTC Vive – Best Gaming and VR product this year
Brace yourself, for future is coming. Virtual reality has been one of major high-tech topics for years now, and we’ll soon be able to reap the rewards it bears. One could say: “Finally HTC Vive!” I, for one, am inclined to go with that statement.
HTC Vive – Virtual Reality Headset
Let’s start from the beginning, shall we? HTC has officially unveiled their SteamVR hardware system in 2015. One year later, and we’re ready for production. HTC Vive is already available for pre-order, and first shipments should be carried out during early May. For $799 you’ll get not only the headset, but couple of wireless controllers, couple of base stations, earbuds, link box and other accessories. Developed together with Valve; Vive should represent a pinnacle of virtual reality revolution – at least for the time being.
Vive gear enters the fray with Oculus Rift and Playstation VR already announced. While duo of companies tend to wage the endless war in most technology categories, it seems that VR headsets won’t follow that pattern. Instead, more than couple of houses should fight for pioneering supremacy in this highly prolific field – at least initially. By looking at everything HTC and Valve have managed to showcase thus far, they might just end up with large piece of the pie themselves.
What to expect from HTC Vive
Well, Vive or any other headset gear for that matter won’t be without their flaws at the beginning. While years have been spent on virtual reality device’s development, one can’t expect new technology to be in its prime from the get-go. I’m positive that Vive will have some issues that need ironing out in the coming months or so. After all, differences between last year’s introductory units and these, pre-order units are already significant.
The most probable initial improvements
Dual controllers should be able to work up to around 4 hours without the need for a recharge. Whether that’s too little – it’s still too early to say. However, battery strength should be upgraded as time progresses. Furthermore, don’t expect next-gen graphics straight from the gates. Headsets are still work in progress and this is the field where they’ll probably improve the most initially. HTC has managed to smooth things up and we’re bound to witness additional improvements day in, day out.
Ready to start?
How to Setup and Install HTC Vive?
Follow our setup guide on how to get started with HTC Vive Virtual Reality headset.
|Resolution||2160 x 1200|
|Viewing Optics||110° Field of View (nominal)|
|Controller||SteamVR controller, any PC compatible gamepad|
Everyone looking at Steam VR headset should be able to pinpoint at least a few clear disadvantages it currently has. For starters, base stations need certain distance between themselves, as well as between them and the user. This excludes certain spaces, and potential buyers should first check the minimum requirements. Speaking of requirements – very few platforms will be able to support Vive headsets initially.
Only high-end machines are recommended, and this excludes almost all laptops. Even though only high-end desktops are recommended at this point, certain laptop manufacturers have already started addressing the issue and we should expect progress in that direction soon enough. Costs of that progress, however, will certainly be high. North of $1,000 high, it would seem.
Finally, wireless gameplay is still unavailable. HTC Vive still requires a long cord which connects it with the computer. It’s not really the subtlest of solutions, but it’s the only one that currently works. You’ll, however, still be able to see the cord, so it’s not exactly like you’ll be tripping over it in your endeavors.
HTC and Valve should be in buoyant mood these coming weeks as Vive headset shows a lot of promise. Things certainly won’t be perfect from the get-go, but then again – they rarely are so. Like any new piece of tech, Vive headgear has a buffering period in front of it, but this doesn’t mean it’s bad in its current state. To the contrary – Vive should be able to offer sensations one hasn’t been able to experience thus far.
Whether it’s gaming or any other activity compatible with this tech, Steam VR headset will certainly be up to the task. I’m only saying that this tech still has a long way to go and that things should improve drastically as time progresses. Who knows; maybe Vive and similar headsets are the joysticks of future, and very near future at that.
HTC Vive is already available for pre-order. For $799 you'll get not only the headset, but couple of wireless controllers, couple of base stations, earbuds, link box and other accessories.
HTC Vive PC Requirements