HTC has launched its first standalone virtual reality headset in China at an event in Shanghai.
Taiwanese VR giant HTC has debuted a standalone spin-off to the HTC Vive virtual reality headset for the Chinese market at ChinaJoy 2017. It’s standalone, so it won’t be as powerful as the gaming PC-fuelled Vive proper, but it also won’t have any of the messy wires required by its cumbersome forebear either.
This is the same class of standalone VR headset that HTC announced for Google Daydream back in May, but due to issues with Google operating in China, this version won’t have Daydream functionality.
However, the new standalone VR headset will be powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 VR platform, which is exactly the same system used in the Google Daydream virtual reality headset.
Speaking about the launch, Alvin W. Graylin, China Regional President at HTC’s Vive division, said: “China is the leading mobile market in the world today, and has the momentum to lead the global VR market as well.”
He continued: “Partnering with Qualcomm to deliver an easy to use and more affordable Vive VR system will enable us to make premium standalone VR widely accessible to the masses in China.”
Interested developers can already register to participate in the ‘Vive Standalone’ associated support programs, and will be able to get early access to upcoming developer events.
It’s also going to be easy for developers to create content for the Vive Standalone headset, given that it’s running on the already well-established Snapdragon 835 VR platform.
“Snapdragon 835 is designed to deliver superior VR experiences without the need for wires or a separate PC,” said Hugo Swart, Senior Director of Product Management at Qualcomm. “We are thrilled to work with HTC’s Vive team as they utilise our rich feature set to create exciting, new VR experiences in the first truly mobile VR headset of the Vive ecosystem.”
This article has been updated to reflect that the HTC Vive Standalone headset for Google Daydream and the HTC Vive Standalone headset for China are the same device, but the latter won’t provide Daydream functionality.
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