HTC formally unveiled its subsequent consumer-focused headset at CES 2023 as we speak. Known as Vive XR Elite, the standalone combined actuality gadget boasts a characteristic set that positions HTC to go toe-to-toe with Meta’s Quest Professional, however at a notably cheaper value of $1,100.
The moniker ‘Flowcus’, a portmanteau coined by VR analyst and YouTuber Brad Lynch when the headset’s design was initially leaked in November, appears to ring true with Vive XR Elite. The design appears very very like a mashup of Vive Movement, an off-the-cuff VR content material viewer utilizing pancake lenses, and Vive Focus 3, the corporate’s enterprise-focused standalone.
Vive XR Elite is beginning pre-orders as we speak, with delivery slated for someday in late February. There’s no actual launch date on the books, so within the meantime let’s speak about a number of the options HTC introduced as we speak, some key specs nonetheless in want of clarification, and the headset’s slew of gaming-focused content material.
However first, the trailer:
In contrast to HTC merchandise in current reminiscence, Vive XR Elite is particularly focusing on gaming, health, productiveness and on-the-go content material consumption, the latter of which is due to a convertible battery headstrap that may be unplugged in favor of a glasses-like temple items.
It’s an fascinating characteristic that’s a primary for any main VR headset, which might hypothetically help you lean again in a seat with out having a cumbersome back-mounted battery to deal with.
After all, you’ll want another energy supply to run the Vive XR Elite when you decide to take away the battery, be it a separate powerbank or a USB cable related to the mains.
What’s extra, Vive XR Elite is a combined actuality gadget, that means it may possibly swap between commonplace VR video games and those who use shade passthrough AR, placing it in the identical class as its chief competitor Meta Quest Professional. And like Quest Professional, Vive XR Elite may be related to a PC through USB-C for PC VR content material, in addition to wirelessly over WiFi, with help as much as WiFi 6E. We’ll discuss just a little extra about content material in a bit.
Beneath, you’ll see the headset has 4 room-tracking digicam sensors, one on either side and one hidden respectively beneath every faceplate. Within the middle is a single RGB digicam for shade passthrough in addition to a depth sensor, which in idea would enhance accuracy of room-scale monitoring and object recognition.
Vive XR Elite additionally boasts Android app streaming, letting you work together with Android apps and video games on a digital cinema display of “300 inches,” the corporate says. Customers can even hyperlink Bluetooth gamepads to their telephones for a fuller cellular gaming expertise. That’s most likely the one means you’d catch us enjoying Fortnite on a VR headset like this, since manipulating controls on the cellphone’s contact floor most likely wouldn’t be efficient.
Right here’s a top-down take a look at the headset, which provides you a very good view of how the back-mounted battery attaches, a take a look at the tightening twist knob, a transparent take a look at the battery’s USB-C charging port. It’s additionally impressively slim, owing to the inclusion of pancake lenses.
Along with supporting the identical controllers that include Vive Focus 3, the headset additionally helps Vive Wrist Tracker, a hand-tracking gadget that may be connected to the person’s wrist, or to things like gun controllers, Ping-Pong paddles, or instruments.
Right here’s a view that reveals headset’s diopter settings for its pancake lenses, which ostensibly permits near-sighted customers to go with out glasses, going as much as -6D independently for each eyes. That little slider beneath the proper lens is a mechanical IPD adjuster going from 54-73mm; nope, no eye-tracking right here, not less than not with out the non-obligatory eye-tracking module that’s arriving in some unspecified time in the future this 12 months.
Audio is served up through two open-ear audio system built-in into the arms of the headset. We’ve poured over all product photographs and have but to see area for a 3.5mm audio jack for exterior audio. That gap close to the bridge of the headset seems to be an connect level for the forthcoming facial-tracking module, which can also be slate to reach someday this 12 months. We’re presently at CES, so we’re including that to our listing of options in want of clarification.
With a shopper goal clearly in its sights, HTC is providing up a slew of gaming-focused content material for Vive XR Elite (full listing beneath) that features what the corporate says is “100 new items of MR and VR content material” together with Demeo, Hubris, Yuki, Maestro, Les Mills Physique Fight, FigminXR, Unplugged, Finger Gun, and extra.
Publish-launch content material will embody Everslaught: Invasion, and later within the 12 months full MR video games like Eggscape. As you recognize, a shopper VR headset is nothing with out video games, so it’s good to see HTC do its due diligence to draw a number of the prime video games to the headset. No Beat Saber, however we wouldn’t anticipate Meta to prioritize porting the favored block-slashing rhythm recreation to such a direct competitor.
The corporate says Vive XR Elite may even be obtainable for enterprise customers in some unspecified time in the future, with extra info coming later this 12 months.
Vive XR Elite additionally has connectors for each face and eye-tracking modules, that are set to launch individually someday in 2023. We’ll be going hands-on at CES 2023, so ensure that to test again for our full impressions of HTC’s subsequent huge leap into shopper VR. We gained’t have the ability to say simply how good a proposition Vive XR Elite really is till we get our fingers on it, and see if it actually stacks as much as the competitors. As it’s, it lacks eye-tracking for out of the field social presence and foveated rendering, and we nonetheless don’t know the way it goes mano a mano with Quest Professional within the passthrough division with its single RGB passthrough digicam.
Right here’s an abridged spec breakdown. We’re working to get a extra detailed listing as soon as we go hands-on right here at CES 2023. We’ve included query marks (?) the place we’ll probe for extra element in-person:
- Inside-out monitoring – extensive FOV cameras (4), depth sensor (1)
- Passthrough – 16 MP RGB digicam (1)
- Decision – 1,920 × 1,920 per eye, show kind(?)
- Show Refresh – 90 Hz
- Chipset – Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2
- Storage & Reminiscence – 128 GB / 12 GB
- FOV – as much as 110-degrees
- Optics – Pancake lens
- IPD Adjustment – guide, 54 – 73 mm vary
- Audio – built-in open-ear audio, exterior audio(?)
- Weight – 625g (together with battery), 273g in ‘glasses’ mode
- Enter – 6DOF movement controllers (2), hand-tracking
- Inside Battery – mAh(?)
- Exterior Battery – detachable and hot-swappable, 30W quick cost, 26.6Wh, mAh(?), typical playtime(?)
One of many largest promoting factors is HTC Vive XR Elite’s value, which though clearly not close to the sub-$500 console value that sometimes will get us excited, it’s coming in a good bit cheaper than the $1,500 Meta Quest Professional.
Be aware: many areas embody taxes calculated within the closing value above (UK, EU, AUS, and many others) however a notable exception is the US. Gross sales tax varies broadly by means of the US primarily based on every state, so the ultimate value in USD may vary from precisely $1,099 in a minority of states with little to no gross sales tax to round $1,240 in states on the upper finish of the vary. Right here’s the regional value breakdown:
- US $1,099 exc. VAT
- UK £1,299 inc. VAT
- DE/FR €1,399 inc. VAT
- NO 15,499 NOK
- SWE 16,299 SEK
- DK 11,099 DKK
- A$ 2,099 inc. GST
- NZ$ 2,299 inc. GST
HTC supplied a full content material lineup, though the corporate hasn’t made it completely clear which video games are thought-about launch-day titles and which is able to come post-launch. HTC is looking the listing beneath “launch window content material,” so we’re checking with them now and can replace as soon as we all know.
In any case, you’ll see a variety of overlap between the newest video games on Quest 2 right here. Highlights embody Demeo, Inexperienced Hell VR, Les Mills Bodycombat, Unplugged, Hubris, Historic Dungeon, The Final Clockwinder, and Ultrawings 2 to call a number of.
|Demeo||Decision Video games||TABLETOP|
|Inexperienced Hell VR||Incuvo||ACTION|
|Les Mills Bodycombat||Odders Lab||FITNESS|
|Gesture VR||Nick Ladd Artwork & Animation||ART|
|The Final Clockwinder||Cyan Ventures||PUZZLE|
|Jupiter & Mars||Tigertron||ADVENTURE|
|Hyper Sprint||Triangle Manufacturing unit||SHOOTER|
|Gravity Sketch VR||Gravity Sketch||CREATIVITY|
|Maestro: The Masterclass||Double Jack||MUSIC|
|Warplanes: WW1 Fighters||Residence Web Video games||SIM|
|2MD : VR Soccer Unleashed||Truant Pixel||SPORT|
|Skyworld: Kingdom Brawl||Vertigo Video games||TABLETOP|
|Curious Alice||Preloaded, V&A, VIVE Arts||ART|
|Down The Rabbit Gap||Cortopia Studios||ADVENTURE|
|Nature Treks||Greener Video games||WELLBEING|
|Mona Lisa: Past the Glass||Emmisive, Louvre, VIVE Arts||ART|
|Tracing Paint: The Pollock Krasner Studio||Media Combo||ART|
|RemindVR: Every day Meditation||VIVE Studios||WELLBEING|
|(Hello)Story of a Portray: What’s the Level||Monkey Body||ART|
|Area Slurpies||Starcade Arcade||ARCADE|
|Cosmic Movement: A Stress-free VR Expertise||CosmicVR||WELLBEING|
|Loopy KungFu||Subject of Imaginative and prescient||FITNESS|
|Offended Birds VR: Isle of Pigs||Decision Video games||ARCADE|
|Ninja Legends||Coinflip Studios||ACTION|
|STYLY：VR PLATFORM FOR ULTRA EXPERIENCE||Styly||ART|
|Items & Peace||VIVE Studios||ART|
|VIVE Dreaming||VIVE Studios||CREATIVITY|
|VeeR: Movies and Films Platform||Velocious Applied sciences||MEDIA|
|Open Brush||Icosa Gallery||CREATIVITY|
|Digital Desktop||Digital Desktop Inc|
|Everlasting Notre-Dame (VIVE ARTS deal)||VIVE Arts, Emmissive, Orange||ART|
|Shores of Loci||Mike TeeVee||PUZZLE|
|Containment Initiative: Reloaded||Gywn Video games||SHOOTER|
|Zombieland: Headshot Fever||XR Video games||SHOOTER|
|Swarm – together with multi-player Champion’s Replace||Greensky Video games||SHOOTER|
|Sam and Max: This Time It’s Digital!||HappyGiant||ADVENTURE|
|Loco Dojo Unleashed||Make Actual||ARCADE|
|Shade Join||Sandford Tech||WELLBEING|
|Disaster Brigade 2 Reloaded (previously Disaster VRigade 2)||Sumalab||SHOOTER|
|Sushi Ben VR (in growth, launches 2023)||Huge Brane Studios / nDreams||ADVENTURE|
|PokerStars VR||Fortunate VR||GAMBLING|
|Tea For God (Demo For Launch)||Void Room||SHOOTER|
Now we have boots on the bottom at CES 2023, so test again quickly for our impressions of Vive XR Elite and all issues AR/VR for this 12 months’s largest shopper electronics present.