So after all those teasing images and recent leaks, the time has come for HTC Vive to officially unveil its latest virtual reality (VR) device. And those leaks were correct, the Vive Flow is a new, smartphone-compatible headset designed for media consumption. Not only that, the company has revealed a whole new platform, Viveport Verse for customers to access content from.
HTC Vive has now confirmed that Vive Flow is focused on helping users relax and improve their mental health. Weighing in at 189g with a dual-hinge design to adjust to most heads, Vive Flow will allow users to watch movies streamed off their phones using Miracast, enjoy meditation apps like TRIPP and connect with colleagues and friends using Vive Sync.
Vive Flow has a 100-degree field of view (FoV), 3.2K resolution (2x 2.1” LCD 1600 x1600 per eye) and a 75 Hz refresh rate. The device should be great for those who wear glasses as it has an in-built diopter adjustment on each lens up to -6.0D. Other features include 6DoF tracking, 4GB RAM, 64GB of storage, stereo speakers, an active cooling system and the ability to connect to an external power source – a 10,000mAh Vive power bank will be separately available – when not connected to a phone. There is a small internal battery that’ll last around five minutes, purely there for hot-swapping between power sources.
Because Vive Flow doesn’t have any controllers users will be able to use their phones as a 3DoF controller instead. In fact, Vive Flow is completely geared around phone connectivity, if you’re not using it to select an app then you can screencast onto the headset. Currently, these features are only supported on Android devices.
“With Vive Flow, HTC is taking technology in a new direction, focusing not on what we do, but on how we feel. Maintaining our wellness has come to the forefront in the last few years, with so many millions feeling stressed every day, so it has never been more important to take time out to calm our minds, and VIVE Flow provides the perfect opportunity to escape our four walls and immerse ourselves in our ideal ambience,” said Cher Wang, Chairwoman and CEO of HTC in a statement. “Meditation, gentle stretches, brain training, streaming our favourite shows or even meeting friends or co-workers in VR with VIVE Sync can all be enhanced by a device light and compact enough to fit in our pocket. VIVE Flow represents the next evolution of technology, as we take a more holistic view of how we can make life better.”
Additionally, there will be a special £5.29 GBP per month Vive Flow subscription plan for Viveport for users to access compatible content.
Vive Flow pre-orders begin today for £499 / $499 USD with a special incentive to order before 31st October, you’ll get £90 worth of free gifts (the official Vive Flow carry case, a bundle of 7 titles and 2 months of Viveport Infinity). Official sales then begin in November. For further updates keep reading VRFocus.