Next to Oculus’ big $400 Summer of Rift sale, the $800 HTC Vive felt as if it was in another price bracket altogether. Now after a price drop to $600, the Vive feels very much back in the game compared to the Rift’s post-sale MSRP of $500. Despite the close timing, HTC says the price cut wasn’t a reaction to Oculus.

It’s been an awesome summer for those in VR land; the two leading PC headsets have now both gotten major price cuts, making high-end VR more accessible than ever.

See Also: HTC is set to reveal a mobile standalone Vive headset later this year. | Image courtesy HTC

Oculus’ $400 Summer Rift sale has been going on for six weeks now, and the company recently opted to extend it several weeks further. A little over two months ago, HTC told us why they opted not to lower their $800 price point to compete with the $600 Rift price that Oculus had set earlier in the year before the Summer sale. Now it seems HTC felt the time was right to drop their own pricing from $800 to $600, but say Oculus wasn’t a factor.

“This isn’t a reaction to Oculus. We’ve had a plan for quite some time that heading into our second holiday we’d adjust the price of Vive to start our ramp up,” an HTC spokesperson told Road to VR. “Now with Vive Tracker coming soon and Deluxe Audio Strap, customers can get each component [and the core system] for the price of the Vive originally. It’s about delivering more value, growing the base for VR, and allowing customers to take advantage of our new accessories.”

When we asked whether the price cut signified a new PC-based VR headset coming soon from the company, the answer was a firm negative.

HTC Says Vive 2 Will Come When It Can Offer "really meaningful innovation"

“No. we expect the current generation Vive to be in market for the foreseeable future,” the spokesperson said. “Right now our focus is on continuing to improve Vive and keep building the ecosystem so that customers and developers can realize the full potential of VR. Outside of that, I can’t comment on future iterations.”

Both HTC and Oculus are suggesting that we won’t see the Rift 2 or Vive 2 for a while yet. Earlier this year, HTC’s China Regional President of Vive told us that he expected next-gen VR headsets to come in one to three year cycles. In May, Oculus’ Head of PC VR said that the Rift wouldn’t be superseded by a new version for “at least the next two years.”

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  • ShiftyInc

    Not a reaction, it was planned. Apparently 2 months ago it wasn’t. Still this price drop is too little compared to the Rift to make any big impact. They should be more aggressive with this, seeing all their other stuff is bleeding money.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Oh please – there is no question that at least part of the cut was a reaction to Oculus move in the market. I get drinking the cool aid, but don’t kid yourself that when a competitor threatens your market by significantly cutting prices you don’t sit up and pay attention and react with some form of price adjustment. If anything, they are testing the market with a slight drop to hedge their bets, then see if the market reacts. I bet there isn’t major shift in improved sales, then they will likely drop it again in another quarter or two.

      In any event, if they could just get their revised controllers out I would move on a set as well especially with the price coming down.

      • Shannon Parkes

        Yah. Also, they continue to position the Vive as a “premium” product, so are hoping they can still use this to justify the price gap between it and the rift. I’m not saying whether or not the costs are comparable or price gaps justifiable. Here, recently on the Vive blog: “New Vive Price Makes The Best VR System More Accessible to the Mass Market”.
        Me, I’m glad the pricing in Australia for the Vive has just come down from AU$1300 to AU$999 with free shipping. If I dip my toe into the game though, it’d probably have to be the Rift, as I’m as poor as anything ;)

        • Justos

          Crazy how people believe what they want regardless of facts.

          Rift & Vive are both ‘premium’. They are both the best of the best. With pros and cons.

          • Get Schwifty!

            Yeah the concept of the Vive being “premium” by pointing to Lighthouse edge in tracking is a bit much but the fans eat it up and help sell the set. Both are good, and for the experience the Rift is clearly a “premium” product as well.

        • Arv

          You’ll be better off getting a Rift tbh. Unless you want to spend an extra $99 on the Deluxe Strap it’s more comfortable to wear and the displays are sharper and clearer with a larger sweet spot and less SDE.

          The Vive has more room for specs and a slightly larger FOV but it’s the quality of the displays that makes the Rift a better headset.

          • Shannon Parkes

            I’m a glasses wearer, so don’t know how much of an issue that might be. I’ve performed some research, but the answers are typically “it depends”, based on the size of the glasses.. and that you should really test both beforehand. Problem is, there are no retails around where I can demo these.. I’ll either have to gamble on the rift (and maybe need to replace the facial interface), or pay more for the vive where you can adjust the distance from the face out of the box… hmm.

            Oh, and regarding the whole “premium” thing, just to be clear I wasn’t saying one is more premium than the other. Just commenting on how the marketing and pricing positions the two.

          • Arv

            With regards to glasses you’re better off getting prescription lenses for both headsets. The WIDMO VR ones are currently the best on the market going by feedback, I’ve been happy with the Lens Lab ones I’ve been using myself but some people having been having issues keeping them in place. I’m going to try these WIDMO ones next to see what they’re like.

          • Shannon Parkes

            Thanks for reminding me about those. Definitely worth considering, and would give me a more compelling reason to get my eyes tested. It has been far too long!

          • Master E

            Having used the Vive, Rift, and PSVR and now owning two diffeent HMDs, I’d have to say PSVR is the best for comfort with glasses. Also it seems to have the least Screen Door Effect which amazed me since I automatically thought of it as a lesser product. The resolution differerence is noticeable in comparison to the Vive and rift, but comfort and subpixel technology a +

            Each headset does something better than the competition.

            Content is another story however and nothing beats paroozing Steam or the Oculus Store

          • Bryan Ischo

            For what it’s worth, the original Vive strap is fine. Maybe it’s marginally worse that the Rift mechanism, but it’s not a deal breaker by any means. I have the new deluxe audio strap for my Vive and I’d say that while playing I hardly notice the difference.

          • RFC_VR

            The deal breaker for me was the effect of the bulky 3-in-1 cable on the stock Vive strap / harness, causing the HMD to shift on the head, putting optics out of focus – stop, adjust, continue (immersion busting). Velcro is a crude tool for regular use.

            The more active your play, and the bigger your roomscale, the more often this could occur. Strap mods helped, including trying to isolate the 3-in-1 cable at waist height so it could not tug on the HMD.

            Tetherless would have eliminated this entirely, although velcro strapping for a harness is always improved by semi-rigid click-adjustment head retention like bicycle helmets have used successfully for years.

          • Icebeat

            Not in my case, I very very notice the difference.

          • RFC_VR

            I’ve only used Rift a couple of times, but came away very impressed with the clarity of their hybrid lens and the bigger sweet spot. Robo Recall was breathtaking in action. I say this as the former owner of 2 Vive’s.

            The stability provided by the Rift’s head strap was also exactly what the Vive was missing – the DAS has solved this problem according to reviews?

            If I wanted back in PC VR in this generation it’d be a Rift no doubt…but there are too many good things coming soon to buy more first generation.

      • Caven

        Admittedly the wording is tricky, but there’s a very real possibility that you’re actually agreeing with ShiftyInc. The impression I get from the first two sentences is that HTC’s “plan” conveniently didn’t happen until after the Summer of Rift sale was announced. After all, why point out that there was no plan prior to the sale if it wasn’t to point out the suspicious timing?

        • Get Schwifty!

          I see what you are saying, but it’s playing with semantics to me to say it wasn’t “planned”, but his first statement is its not a “reaction”… when clearly it was.

          • Caven

            If ShiftyInc meant it as sarcasm, then his first sentence isn’t meant to be taken at face-value. After all, he’s explicitly acknowledging that HTC’s “plan” apparently didn’t exist prior to the Oculus sale. So if he isn’t recognizing it as a reaction, why would he draw attention to the fact that HTC’s plan only materialized after the price drop–contrary to HTC’s previous claims that no price drop was planned?

    • Tyler Soward

      Maybe it was a planned reaction?

      • Get Schwifty!

        HAH! Now this was good….

  • Meow Smith

    Yep they did it out of the goodness of their hearts not to make their stockholders happy.


  • cactus

    Little summer logical riddle (just for fun):

    -We will not make any price cut-
    …became: We will make a price-cut soon

    -Our price-cut is not a reaction to Oculus-
    …became: Obiviously we did that as reaction to Oculus price cuts

    -We don’t have any plan to release a new Vive set soon-
    …what could became?

    • Tyler Soward


    • Alorwin

      It becomes “fuck HTC for their anti-consumer policies, I hope they go bankrupt and fail”

    • Boogieman

      HTC Vive 2 and Oculus Rift 2 should be coming out soon since they both lie their fucking asses off about this shit.

      Basically, when they say it is far away, that means it is close towards release.

  • NooYawker

    Any company that sees their competitor drop their price to half of yours should get a reaction out of them. Otherwise they’re terrible strategists. I’m sure they planned a price cut, most technology goes down in price after time. But I bet they pushed the date up and probably cut it more than they wanted.

    • I agree.

      I think there is always the worry of “Race to the bottom”. This happened with apps when the Apple App Store opened. Competitors (people who copied somebody else’s idea) would come in with a cheaper version so the original #1 developer would slash prices to remain number one, so their competitors followed suit slashing their prices again and again all in a spiral to the bottom where one of the competitors would just make his app free and basically kill a large chunk of the market. So, keeping a price up sets a standard sometimes even if it is less profitable but you better make sure you are worth that top spot.

      • NooYawker

        There will absolutely be a wave of cheap HMD’s being sold at rock bottom prices and gives mediocre performance.

  • Yes, in fact BY CHANCE the Vive price cut comes when the Summer of Rift should have finished.

    • Boogieman

      Rift will either stay at $400 or go up to $500. I feel like it is gonna stay at $400 because why get a Rift when you can get something better for $100 more?

  • Raphael

    It’s still more expensive than penguins. I could buy 2 penguins for 599. 4 goats. 2 cows. 14 chickens. I don’t mean i could buy all these animals. But I’d seriously have to consider two penguins versus a vive.

    • Raphael

      Sorry people. Account was hacked by a trump supporter. I’ve changed password but i figured I’d leave this post of his as it’s one of the less offensive ones.

      Apparently he lives on a farm.

      • J.C.

        I thought it was hilarious.

  • Paul Daley

    They shouldn’t have said anything. They’re asking us to believe that when they laid out their plans for the year and the revenue they expect to make, etc., August 21 was always there, circled in red, as the day they would drop prices independent of any other factors. It is impossible to believe that.

  • Pyro

    My lie detector has determined that this is a lie.

  • AndyP

    A situation where ‘no comment’ would have been a good option.

  • Alorwin

    HTC: “We’ve got no plan to cut the price.
    Also HTC: “We’ve had a plan in place for a long time to cut the price.

    Fuck HTC.

  • Jean-Sebastien Perron

    HTC Vive is now retro-VR with it’s old bulky/heavy tech and vr sticks. Why would anyone pay the extra for an inferior product that has no AAA games like the oculus does? If only the Vive had proper headphones, controller and a decent resolution in the center of the view where it is most important.

  • Boogieman

    Really hate Oculus and HTC for lying their asses off just to bring in as much money as possible. A couple weeks ago HTC said they were happy with their price and won’t drop it. Now they just dropped it. Like, what the fuck.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Welcome to the wonderful world of business….

  • bschuler

    I’m thinking now that the worlds arcade’s and many companies are either stocked or holding off on buying anymore Vives, while waiting for lighthouse 2.0’s warehouse sized tracking. This finally let HTC have enough headsets to sell to consumers at a reduced price. While lighthouse 2.0 has little benefit for the average consumer.. this change in the market is just what HTC needed and at just the right time. Just like you can’t get a graphics card for MSRP these days, the Vive was a sought after headset throughout the world, with many arcades going up in practically every country and it seemed any company going into VR or interested in it as a tool, is using it. With this little break, it might finally make some inroads here in America in the consumer section and hold it’s own against the Rift.

    • Get Schwifty!

      Not sure where you live, but getting the either set in the US at price was a no-brainer, and if you had access to Amazon the world over you could pretty much do the same. I really doubt the arcade market is what’s responsible for a shift in pricing, clearly it’s in response to Oculus more than anything else.

  • flamaest

    I don’t know about most people, but as soon as the Oculus sale hit, I got my Rift. Don’t plan on getting a vive.