No Fanfare for the Oculus VR Headset Launch
The Oculus Rift is taking its first step towards its launch. The launch will not be a full on party scene. No stars at the launch, no glitter or glamor, rather the headsets will come as a surprise and will arrive at the doorsteps to people who have pre-ordered the new technology worth $600.
The journey started 4 years back, when Palmer Luckey, the founder of Oculus Rift, decided to make the VR headset that he created from parts of smartphones. The invention turned into a head mounted display that has taken into consideration the utmost health issues such as motion sickness.
The first orders of the Oculus have already been sold and another wave of orders have been placed and will arrive in the summer. Oculus was acquired by Facebook for $2 billion in 2014.
Though Facebook is associated with the Oculus and has reduced the health issues, the issue of nausea and sickness still remains. Side by side, the sales expectations have lowered due to the fact that consumers will need a very fast PC to use Oculus and there aren’t that many consumers who currently have the required PC.
Luckey, at the Game Developers Conference said, “It’s not going to be everyone in the whole world using virtual reality — or even gamers using virtual reality. There is going to be an adoption curve over time, starting with early adopters or PC gamers who either own or are willing to buy a high-end PC. In that sense, it is part of a multi-year process.”
The headset will be available with the Xbox controller and different games, but the Oculus Touch Controllers are still not available and aren’t set to be available until later in 2016. The price of which is not yet told.
Luckey believes that the invention will one day feel more like sunglasses than big goggles.
Once the Rift has been launched, we will soon after see the HTC Vive and the Sony PlayStation VR come to market as well.
The HTC Vive is set to launch on April 5th, while the Sony headset will be available in October this year. The Sony headset will start to be sold at the price of $400 while the HTC Vive is more powerful and thus, expensive. It will be sold at $800.
Jesse Schell, the creator of VR games such as “I Expect You to Die” expects around 8 million headsets to be sold by 2017.
The CEO of game engine company Unity, John Riccitiello, has said not to hype the launch of these VR products as the headsets alone will be no revolution, but it would take some time for a proper revolution to come.
Riccitiello has said, “I called every one of the major hardware guys and told them to rename their launch to beta. Adding to it he said, “I told them to be careful. I’m a little older than most of these CEOs. I would hate to see our industry have to do a recovery year. It’s going to have a spectacular year. It’s just not going to be as big as what the analysts have said.”
“It’ll be bigger next year, and the year after that it’ll be even bigger,” Riccitiello said. “I think by 2019, it’ll feel like an industry.”