Vive Flow Gets A Business Edition & Optional Controller

HTC launched the Vive Flow Business Edition this week, an enterprise version of its lightweight immersive viewer headset.

As we covered in our review, Flow is the lightest VR headset on the Western market at just 189 grams. However, it’s a device with fairly niche use cases and some major caveats.

Flow is controlled by your phone as a rotational laser pointer, but that’s obviously not ideal for business use cases so HTC is now selling an optional $59 controller. The controller isn’t positionally tracked either though, it also just acts as a laser pointer. HTC says the controller can also be purchased by consumers.

Importantly, Flow is a tethered headset — to use the headset, it needs to connect to a USB power source. Flow only supports a very small and specific list of Android phones, with no iPhone or laptop support.

The Business Edition also comes with a two-year commercial warranty and an expedited return and replacement system, if needed. On the software side, there’s also ‘Kiosk Mode’ — this allows content to be queued or started remotely, on behalf of the user, and prevents accidentally closure of an experience.

Vive Flow Business Edition is available through Vive’s Business site for $499.

HTC’s Vision of the Metaverse is Heavy on Buzzwords, Light on Substance

HTC released a video showing off its vision of the metaverse, a reflection of what the company thinks virtual spaces will look like in the near future. And… it’s not a great look.

Some ideas are inevitable. Slim and light XR glasses capable of fluidly serving up novel and meaningful interactions are basically the holy grail in tech right now, with Apple, Meta, Google, Qualcomm, and many more laying down the groundwork to one day make them a reality. When that will happen, no one can say.

HTC’s most recent concept video isn’t at fault for shooting for the stars. It is, after all, only a showcase for what should be outwardly neat concepts, but it unfortunately manages to land pretty hard on its face as it wildly strings together some of its favorite buzzwords and concepts that feel plucked straight from trending hashtags. It feels, well, like a parody, raising the question of whether HTC’s drably conventional futurism is actually doing more harm than good.

Meta: A Polarizing Trendsetter

Add VR, AR, and AI together and you have the fundamental recipe for the metaverse. That’s at least what Meta laid out in its futuristic concept video as it makes its transition from traditional social networks to a self-described “metaverse company.”

Meta’s video, which it released during its Connect developer conference in October, is less a roadmap and more a marketing barrage—like a hundred Magic Leap ‘whale’ moments smooshed into one.

It’s supposed to get you excited, but also open up a range of interactions to an audience that may have heard of AR or VR, but may not really know what either means functionally.

Okay, a playdough-faced Mark Zuckerberg isn’t exactly what dreams are made of, but you have to give credit where credit is due: it looks pretty amazing, even if the smug, corporate cleanliness of it all doesn’t more than resemble the beginning of a Black Mirror episode. It at least makes the effort to demonstrate that the metaverse will one day let you do almost anything you can imagine.

Follow the Leader

Now toss in some of HTC’s favorite concepts from the last few years: 5G, blockchain, sprinkle in some NFTs, reduce the production budget by a whole bunch and you’ve got a treacly sweet dollar store knock-off of Meta’s hype video that feels like it’s more concerned with lining up the right buzzwords than offering an honest-to-goodness vision of the future.

Yes, we know the future will be cool, but is the future… VIVERSE? You be the judge.

That’s not only my hot take. YouTube may have removed the counter on its ‘dislike’ button, but a simple browser extension reveals that HTC’s video is currently sitting around a 3:1 dislike ratio, which isn’t typical for any of the company’s videos. You might chalk that up to residual metaverse hate, courtesy of Meta and not HTC itself, but… well, that should have been preventable by not making a remarkably worse, less demonstrative version.

What’s confusing—besides how you actually pronounce ‘VIVERSE’, or that the future is somehow just a standard version of VIVE XR Suite, or that you have to press a ‘CHEERS’ button to drink, or that you pay for a glass of wine in your house with Bitcoin, or that you can actually hug an entirely photoreal version of your grandma then buy her a cat NFT and she doesn’t even ask why the hell you would waste your money on that… sorry, lost myself there—the confusing thing is how HTC plans on creating this future for anyone, let alone the more outwardly mature, less gaming-focused enterprise segment it’s been courting the past few years.

To think, HTC and Oculus were once competitors back in the early days of consumer VR. Since the launch of Quest in 2019 though, HTC has progressively shied away from appealing to consumers outside of China because it didn’t (more likely couldn’t) invest the same heaps of cash that Meta has in a standalone app ecosystem for its own standalone Focus headsets. Ever since, it’s been pumping out higher-cost headsets for enterprise and arcades outside of China, and quietly maintaining its own PC VR app store Viveport (which has a worse selection of games than Steam, but at a subscription price so you can actually play a bunch of great VR games at a significantly cheaper price than buying them individually).

But until we see HTC more broadly appeal to consumers though with its hardware and standalone app ecosystem, it’s hard to take the company’s vision of the metaverse any more seriously than its NFT marketplace—a quickly produced, low upkeep project that is more flash than boom. And that’s a sad thought for a company that still has the ability to deliver legitimately great VR hardware, and simultaneously hasn’t perpetrated a steady stream of privacy scandals over the years. The Vive XR Suite isn’t bad either, but it’s not the future—it’s the now.

Granted, these perfectly integrated XR futures aren’t coming anytime soon, and no one company will likely be able to make them a reality alone—no matter how slick the hype video, or how buzzy the word. Still, that doesn’t mean the immersive web of tomorrow will be a neutral playground that all companies are equally building towards. If the mobile market is any indication, we can at least expect to see early efforts divided along product ecosystems.

And in the meantime, even if the top headset producers imbue their next device with all of the wishlist items, like eye-tracking, facial haptics, varifocal lenses, all-day batteries, wide FOV displays—it’s probable that none of these things will impress anyone if they aren’t already paying attention to the space. This may mean most people are still a few device generations away from getting their first VR headset, and decidedly more for an AR headset.

So you might ask, what exactly is HTC and Meta selling with these far out concept videos? It actually may be more about what they’re buying: time.

Do you think these sort of concept videos do more harm than good? Let us know your thoughts below.

The post HTC’s Vision of the Metaverse is Heavy on Buzzwords, Light on Substance appeared first on Road to VR.

HTC Announces Wrist Tracker for Vive Focus 3, Releasing in Early 2022 for $129

HTC unveiled a new VR tracker device at CES 2022 today, this time targeting its $1,300 enterprise-focused standalone headset, Vive Focus 3. It’s slated to go on sale sometime early this year, starting at $129.

Unlike its SteamVR-compatible Vive Tracker, the new Vive Wrist Tracker is a wrist-worn device which hooks into Vive Focus 3’s inside-out tracking system. It does this essentially the same way the headset’s controllers are tracked in room-scale space, i.e. through infrared LEDs that are tracked optically through the headset’s onboard camera sensors.

HTC says in the announcement that the tracker allows users to either strap it to their wrist for what the company calls “advanced hand tracking” in addition to using controllers, or to objects like gun controllers, Ping-Pong paddles, or tools.

Below you can see a Nerf gun has  been rigged up with Vive Wrist Tracker, making for a 6DOF-tracked virtual weapon:

The company says Vive Wrist Tracker is 85% smaller than Vive Focus 3’s controller, and 50% lighter at 63g. It boasts up to four hours of constant use, charged via USB-C. HTC says it includes a simple one-button pairing feature for wireless connection, and also features a removable strap for easy cleaning.

As for its more accurate hand tracking, this is what the company says in Vive Wrist Tracker’s announcement:

“When user wears the tracker on the wrist, we can predict the tracker’s motion trajectories even when the tracker is out of camera’s view in a while by using high-frequency IMU data and an advanced kinematic model. With this technology, we can predict their hand position when the hands leave the tracking camera view.”

Road to VR skipped the physical bit of CES 2022 this year, however we’re very interested to see the wrist tracker in action to see if it makes a material difference in terms of hand tracking.

Image courtesy HTC

Likely its biggest appeal is the ability to track objects, giving location-based entertainment venues and enterprise users the ability to avoid the typical mixing and matching of hardware ecosystems, such as OptiTrack or SteamVR base stations. To boot, HTC says its releasing CAD files so prospective owners can build custom docking solutions or harnesses around the tracker.

HTC is initially launching Vive Wrist Tracker in the US starting early 2022, priced at $129/€129/£119. Although they haven’t said as much, that pricing means it will very likely roll out Vive Wrist Tracker to the UK and EU at a later date.

In addition to Vive Wrist Tracker, HTC unveiled a few other Vive Focus 3 accessories, including a new charging travel case and a multi-battery charging dock. It’s not clear when either of those will go on sale, or for what price. We’ll be keeping an eye on the Vive accessories product page in the meantime.

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HTC Vive Wrist Tracker Announced For Focus 3

HTC revealed a Vive Wrist Tracker for the Focus 3 headset.

The tracker is expected to launch early in the year in the United States starting at $129, HTC says.

“VIVE Wrist Tracker makes tracking hand-held objects even easier, whether that’s for sports, training scenarios using tools, or even things like steering wheels. And it even helps for older setups, effectively converting 3dof controllers to 6dof,” reads a blog post from HTC’s Shen Ye. “Location Based Entertainment (LBEs) venues can effortlessly add accessories – everything from sports equipment, like tennis racquets and baseball bats, to weapons for first-person shooter games.”

The post suggests Wrist Tracker accessories may even be able to help with hand tracking when the hands are outside of the field of view of the tracking cameras or one hand is occluding another. Interestingly, the post says that  when combining the tracker with an additional “3dof sensor” held in the hand, “such as a wrench and ping pong bat,” the combination provides full 6dof  positional tracking, theoretically offering another path toward bringing everyday objects into tracked VR space.

Since 2016 HTC has supported the SteamVR Tracking system on its original HTC Vive headset. The system relies on expensive base stations set outside the VR play area but also provides some of the most precise tracking available to consumers at home. At CES in 2017, HTC announced the original Vive Tracker which worked with Valve’s system to commandeer and reskin a range of accessories for virtual reality.  More recently though, Valve shipped its own Index headset powered by SteamVR Tracking while HTC has focused in on an inside-out tracking system similar to the one used by Meta with Oculus Quest, which is employed by Focus 3 and the recently-released Vive Flow.

The Wrist Tracker announced at CES 2022 was revealed alongside some other accessories for Vive Focus 3, including a Charging Case for compact traveling and a Multi Battery Charger that can charge up to four batteries at the same time.

Analyst Take: Why HTC Vive Flow Should Have Enterprise Subscriptions

There is a place in the market for a headset like HTC’s Vive Flow, however, I am not sure that it works in its current state.

Here’s a breakdown of why.

Why does Vive Flow Exist?

Let’s start with Vive Flow’s purpose, according to HTC Vive.

The company says it is primarily for meditation, entertainment, or productivity. This seems valid especially when you consider that the design is much more accessible than previous generations of VR headsets, and it has a removable face gasket for easy maintenance. That said, the Vive Flow still requires an external battery for use which for many may end up being a major objection. Vive Flow weighs a meager 189g, which is primarily because it has only a small battery designed to allow for hot swapping an external power supply without the device turning off.

HTC sees Vive Flow as a headset you put on to escape your hectic day and a place you go to relax and play some casual games or experience some meditation apps. The headset is also the most portable VR headset on the market today with the ability to fold up easily and fit inside a very small container for easy transport, something most other VR headsets cannot claim.

The Specs

While most of the specs leaked, the Vive Flow is said to have a 100-degree FOV which is pretty good for such a portable headset.

The display has a resolution of 3.2K and a refresh rate of 75Hz. I believe it is powered by the outdated Qualcomm XR1, which is still a very good chip but shouldn’t be relied upon solely for compute and should mostly be seen as a chip for offloading work from a smartphone or other compute device. Critically, unlike Oculus Go which used XR1, Vive Flow has 6-DoF head tracking even though it does not come with any kind of a controller. With the Vive Flow, your phone is the controller, and interactions are done through your phone’s touchscreen to maximize portability. The headset also has two bottom firing spatial speakers which are great, but are probably best supplemented with noise cancelling Bluetooth headphones for better isolation.

The Experience

I recently got a chance to try out the HTC Vive Flow at a small event in Los Angeles hosted by HTC Vive, and I spent some time with the headset and some of the people involved in making the Flow happen.

Right off the bat, I was impressed by the total thickness and size of the device and the fact that it easily folded up like a pair of glasses/goggles, which isn’t really a thing you can do with VR headsets today. After I got to play with the hardware a bit, I put Vive Flow on and it was instantly clear why this works as a more passive VR experience. This is what Oculus Go was good for, until Facebook killed that product. I think it was a mistake to kill Go because it was perfect for a certain segment of the market that doesn’t need 6-DoF or very high performance, but still could benefit from a quality low-cost media consumption solution.

When I wore Vive Flow, I first tried the TRIPP app which is a digital wellbeing and meditation app that I am familiar with, and the company’s founder and CEO Nanea Reeves spoke very highly of her experience with this headset and how easy it was to work with HTC to port it. It is quite clear apps like TRIPP great for this lightweight goggle form factor, and just the right fidelity for the XR1 chip, which seemed to run TRIPP’s app smoothly. In addition to that, I also played Space Slurpies, which was a more casual gaming app that the developer Alexander Clark ported to Flow. Space Slurpies is a pretty passive, yet engaging 3D version of the popular smartphone game snake, with a twist that this version uses your smartphone as the controller to control your snake’s movement. This game was also engaging and smooth and has both single and multiplayer experiences, which could prove to be a great way to unwind.

Last, but certainly not least, was the ability to mirror your smartphone’s screen via Miracast to the headset. This experience sets you up with the ability to receive phone calls, text messages and view apps on your phone like TikTok and YouTube. This gives you a virtually ‘huge’ screen that also gives you privacy — because you’re viewing it via VR headset — and this also gets around some of the worst content barriers for VR. Specifically, the fact that so many apps don’t let you download content onto a VR headset for viewing offline. The Netflix experience was great, but I could also see this reviving a ton of media consumption experiences that died when apps like Netflix never brought offline support to their VR apps.

Also, while I am very bald, I could absolutely see how this headset could be much easier to use for people who have a lot of hair or simply can’t deal with the current ergonomics of VR headsets. I believe that HTC plans other solutions, but the folding form factor enabling maximum portability is going to be the main use.

Overall, my experience was fairly positive but I was left wondering how much of a market there really is for Vive Flow and whether HTC’s go-to-market makes much sense, especially since the company is pitching this as a consumer product.

Enterprise Use Cases And Pricing?

Vive Flow is a headset that is very good at its intended purpose, but I believe HTC Vive’s go-to-market plan is fairly flawed.

They are rolling out a $6 per month Viveport subscription to make access to content fairly inexpensive, but at $499 I simply don’t see very many people going out of their way to choose this headset over Oculus Quest 2. Additionally, I’m not entirely sure the best applications of this headset are even remotely consumer applications. For example, HTC Vive brought around MyndVR, which is a VR application for helping senior communities transport their residents to other parts of the world virtually. That sounds like a great enterprise application to me. Overall, I could actually see this headset working much better paired with an application like MyndVR or TRIPP as part of a monthly subscription that includes the hardware and software and entirely ignores the current $499 pricing.

I just don’t see consumers necessarily being sold on the form factor first rather than the application first. I could see this headset being far more successful with the backing of Oculus’ content library, but even with that the $499 pricing is simply too much in my mind for most consumers, and that’s why I think an enterprise model makes more sense here.

This is HTC’s first consumer standalone VR headset in a while, especially in the US where none of its standalone headsets ever launched as consumer products. I would really like to see Flow paired with applications that benefit from its portability and make sense offered as a service. This is really the only path I see for the Vive Flow’s success. Currently, HTC plans to sell Vive Flow on its website, direct to consumer with no clear plans to sell it anywhere else.

Disclosure: Anshel Sag is an analyst for Moor Insights & Strategy and, like all research and analyst firms, provides or has provided research, analysis, advising, and/or consulting to many high-tech companies in the industry. The author does not hold any equity positions with any companies cited in this column.

HTC Announces Vive Flow, a Compact VR Headset Focused on Casual Entertainment & Wellbeing

HTC today announced Vive Flow, its latest standalone VR headset. While the company just recently released the enterprise-focused Vive Focus 3, the Vive Flow aims for the consumer market with a compact size and feature-set that HTC has designed around casual entertainment and wellbeing apps.

Vive Flow Specs, Price, and Features

Priced at $500 and planned for release in November, HTC is positioning Vive Flow as a VR headset to help people relax, learn, and connect with friends.


Image courtesy HTC

The standalone headset aims to be both compact and lightweight; HTC says Vive Flow weighs just 189 grams, which is several times lighter than any major VR headset on the market today, standalone or otherwise.

Resolution, Field-of-view, & Audio

Image courtesy HTC

Vive Flow is said to have a “3.2K” resolution, though the company hasn’t specified the precise display. Based on the way they’ve marketed their most recent headsets, we understand this to mean roughly 1,600 × 1,600 per-eye.

Meanwhile, Vive Flow’s refresh rate is confirmed at 75Hz and the horizontal field-of-view at 100°. A diopter adjustment allows users to focus each lens to fit their glasses prescription, up to −6.0D. The headset also includes on-board audio and supports bluetooth headphones.

Processor & External Battery Power

Image courtesy Qualcomm

Vive Flow uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR1 processor with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage.

While the device is standalone, it will rely extensively on external power from a USB battery pack (not included) or a phone. Vive Flow has a small on-board battery but it only lasts a “few minutes” and is designed to allow users to hot swap the headset’s tether between power sources.

Tracking & Input

Image courtesy HTC

The headset supports 6DOF head-tracking and users can pair an Android phone to be used as a 3DOF controller (head-based pointing can be used as a fallback). Hand-tracking won’t be supported at launch, though it may come in a future update.

In addition to running standalone apps, users can mirror content from their Android smartphone into the headset to watch video streaming apps, play flat Android games, and the like. iOS devices aren’t supported by the headset for use as a controller or content mirroring, though the company says they’re working on it.

Vive Flow Apps & Content

Image courtesy HTC

Beyond mirroring content from Android smartphones, Vive Flow can run standalone applications which will be served from a mobile version of HTC’s Viveport app store.

HTC says Vive Flow is built for “wellbeing, brain training, productivity, and light gaming,” and is focusing on serving those kinds of apps through Viveport.

We don’t have a complete list of the apps which will be offered at launch, but the company has given a few examples like the mindfulness app TRIPP, an original VR video series from MyndVR, and the company’s own social VR app, Vive Sync. We expect to hear more about specific apps that will support Vive Flow in the near future.

At launch, HTC will be offering a Viveport subscription plan for Vive Flow priced at $6 per month. It isn’t clear if this will allow access to the headset’s entire library of apps, or just select apps (as is the case with the company’s PC VR subscription library).


Vive Flow carrying case | Image courtesy HTC

Since Vive Flow requires an external power source (but doesn’t include one in the box), HTC says it will be selling a 10,000mAh external battery pack. The company hasn’t announced the price, but we expect it will be priced similarly to the $80 battery pack the company has previously sold alongside its Vive wireless adapter accessory. Any power bank will work with Vive Flow, however.

HTC has also designed a carrying case for Vive Flow. Though also not yet priced, it will be included as a pre-order bonus.

Vive Flow Release Date & Pre-order

Image courtesy HTC

Vive Flow is set for a release date in November, but pre-orders start today. The Vive Flow price is $500, and pre-orders will receive both the carrying case and a bundle of seven apps.

Do you have questions about Vive Flow? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll try to get them answered!

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Facebook’s Future CTO Teases New Slim VR ‘Concept’ Prototype

Facebook’s future chief technology officer and current head of virtual reality Andrew Bosworth teased a slim VR headset concept prototype less than a day before HTC is set to reveal a new VR product.

The leaks have been steady from HTC ahead of an announcement for the super slim Vive Flow VR headset reportedly priced at $499. Facebook, meanwhile, set expectations of focusing its VR efforts around the $299 Oculus Quest 2 this holiday season.

Bosworth (aka “Boz”) tweeted the image below on Wednesday with text referring to Facebook Reality Labs researchers working in Redmond, Washington led by former Valve researcher Michael Abrash. Bosworth wrote:

“Proud of the research Michael Abrash’s team is working on at FRL-R Redmond—excited to get an early look at some of the technologies that will underpin the metaverse (we work on several prototype headsets to prove out concepts, this is one of them. Kind of. It’s a long story.)

andrew bosworth arbrash tease

HTC’s China President Alvin Wang Graylin repliedHey Boz, Nice looking research project. Want to trade for a production quality device hot out of our factory?”

While we’ve seen a number of very slim VR prototypes over the years, only Huawei has yet shipped to consumers – and only in China. The slimmer approach to VR optics sees major advancements in terms of being lighter weight and more comfortable, but some designs may have other drawbacks. Some smartglasses designs, for example, tether by wire to an external computing phone or processing puck to further the weight reduction. The approach can bring over some of your content or apps from another device like your phone, but it also introduces a bothersome wire to the experience. In addition, input on this class of device is not yet standardized so while it might be a good fit for consuming flat-screen content wherever you are on a big virtual screen, you’re unlikely to enjoy any of the highest-selling VR games on such a device.

We can’t wait to see what HTC reveals and hope to get more details about this Facebook prototype headset.

HTC Likely Announcing a New Standalone Vive Headset Next Week

HTC recently said that it will host an online Vive event next week, but has only teased minimal hints about what it plans to announce. Regulatory filings spotted by Road to VR suggest a new standalone HTC Vive headset will be revealed.

It’s been less than five months since HTC launched its most recent VR headsets—the Vive Pro 2 and Vive Focus 3—but it looks like they’ve got another up their sleeve.

Just ahead of next week’s HTC Vive event, a new “HTC Vive headset” has appeared in regulatory filings submitted by the company to the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

The FCC is tasked with certifying products with electromagnetic emissions to be safe and compatible with regulations. Products utilizing radio, WiFi, infrared, etc. need certification before they can be distributed for sale. Certification by the FCC marks one step closer to the launch of consumer electronics product.

The new headset is identified by the model number 2Q7Y100, which doesn’t match any known Vive headsets thus released. Although the company has requested confidentiality of key filings which would clearly identify the headset, there’s some clues in the available information which point toward a standalone headset.

For one, the device’s FCC label—which all consumer electronics devices are required to have—is an ‘e-label’, which means instead of being printed on the device it’s accessible through the device’s software. Specifically, the user can access the FCC label by going to Settings → About → Regulatory Information. In fact, this is the same labeling approach that HTC’s Vive Focus 3 uses.

Further supporting the likelihood of this new Vive headset being standalone is documentation detailing Wi-Fi test reports which measure to ensure that the device’s Wi-Fi broadcasts are within the legal ranges. It appears the device uses a Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) radio. Most dedicated PC VR headsets use some form of Bluetooth for controller connectivity, but none of them use Wi-Fi.

HTC has kept its teasing for next week’s event pretty minimal thus far. The company has been using the phrase, “Go with the Flow,” (notable emphasis on “Flow” as a proper noun), in its promotions which have included photos with a cylindrical case of some sort. Ostensibly the headset will be small enough to fit inside the case, which would suggest a headset much more compact than most of what’s on the market today (if the scale of the photoshopped images can be trusted, anyway).

That certainly falls in line with the Vive Proton headsets that the company initially teased way back in early 2020; though they haven’t talked about them much since. If this new standalone is based on Proton, the headset seems likely to have been rebranded to Vive Flow, which the company trademarked in late August.

There’s also the possibility that Vive Flow won’t be a VR headset at all, but will actually be the company’s first AR headset based on Qualcomm’s ‘Smart Viewer’ reference design.

All will be revealed soon enough; HTC’s event will be held next week on October 14th.

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HTC Vive Is Teasing ‘Big News In A Small Package’ Next Month

HTC Vive is back at it with the announcement teases. The company is now hinting at a reveal next month in predictably cryptic ways.

The announcement takes place inside the Engage platform at 8am PT on October 14 and anyone can attend on VR platforms or flatscreen devices. HTC accompanied the news with an image (below) of… well we can’t quite tell what. It looks like a flask or Bluetooth speaker. Some have speculated it could be a case for some kind of foldable headset. There’s a little more to the story, though.

New HTC Vive Teases

The sign-up page includes the message ‘Go with the Flow’. We’d take bets that the reveal is for something called ‘Vive Flow’, then. Vive China President Alvin Wang Graylin also teased the event will have “big news in a small package“.

HTC Vive Go-with-the-Flow

Now, fair warning, this next one is a big bit of speculation on our part. Taking a look at the event key art, there are two shapes at the bottom that do look just a little like lenses, or perhaps even the front of the Project Proton concepts HTC revealed at the beginning of last year.

HTC Proton

Proton was designed to be a lightweight headset powered either by a phone or onboard compute. Could that fit the message of something big in a small package? Or perhaps the company has something on the AR side to show?

But that’s just speculation. Let’s not get too ahead of ourselves just yet. HTC has already launched two VR headsets this year – the upgraded Vive Pro 2 for PC and the enterprise-focused Vive Focus 3 standalone headset. Though Pro 2 can be picked up by anyone, it’s still an expensive high-end device. Whatever the company announces next month — two weeks before the Facebook Connect conference — it’s likely to follow that high-end trend.

We’ll of course bring you the latest on the Vive announcement as soon as we can.

HTC Vive Cosmos, Pro Headsets Discounted In UK Sale

HTC is discounting its Vive headset range in the UK this week, as part of a back to school promotional sale.

The discounts, available online through HTC in the UK , are fairly hefty and bring the price down on some of HTC’s older PC VR headsets.

Here are all the deals available on HTC Vive’s online store in the UK:

– Vive Cosmos: £549 (down from £699)

– Vive Cosmos Elite: £749 (down from £899)

– Vive Cosmos Elite Headset Only: £449 (down from £549)

– Vive Pro Full Kit: £969 (down from £1,119)

– Vive Pro Eye: £1,149 (down from £1,299)

All of these offers also include 2 months of Viveport Infinity, a subscription membership that allows you to download and play games included in the service for only the price of the ongoing subscription. It works similarly to Xbox Game Pass, but for VR games. Some popular games included with Viveport include A Fisherman’s Tale, Superhot VR, The Room VR, Cosmodread, Moss, Hyper Dash, Synth Riders and many more.

It’s also important to note that the Pro headsets listed in the sale are the older Pro models. The newer Pro 2 model was announced in May alongside the enterprise-focused HTC Vive Focus 3. Those newer headsets remain at full price, with the headset-only model of the Pro 2 available for £659 and the full Pro 2 kit available for £1299.

If you’re looking at the Cosmos headsets on sale, then you’ll want to keep the differences between models in mind. The base Cosmos is HTC’s consumer PC VR headset, which released in 2019. The Cosmos Elite models are the same headset, but with an added external tracking option that lets you use the headset with SteamVR base stations.

Those with base stations and controllers already can go for the headset-only Cosmos Elite at £449.

Will you be picking up anything in the HTC back to school sale? Let us know in the comments.