A new commercial-focused hardware bundle including Rift headset, Touch controllers, three Sensors, and three facial interfaces was revealed at Oculus Connect 4 this week. The bundle, which can be ordered in bulk, for the first time offers a commercial license, enterprise-grade warranty, and dedicated customer support.
Hugo Barra, VP of Virtual Reality at Facebook, announced the Oculus for Business program on stage during the event’s opening keynote, highlighting two examples of existing commercial partnerships, one with Audi who have Rift experiences for viewing custom car configurations installed in hundreds of showrooms worldwide, and Cisco, who created a VR collaboration environment on top of their Spark platform:
Oculus have been slow to entice the enterprise & commercial sector, perhaps because their room-scale solution took far longer to reach a high standard compared to the HTC Vive, which offered a near-flawless room-scale VR package since its launch in April 2016. HTC introduced a $1,200 Vive ‘Business Edition’ in June 2016, dominating the enterprise sector for well over a year.
The new Oculus Rift Business Bundle, which starts at $900, has been detailed on the official Oculus Blog, stating that the Rift can be used to “boost productivity, accelerate trainings, and present the otherwise impossible to their employees and customers—across industries like tourism, education, medical, construction, manufacturing, automotive, and retail.”
Oculus still doesn’t doesn’t offer a commercial/enterprise app platform, something that Valve and HTC have been focusing on lately through Steam and Viveport. Interestingly, Oculus is shipping to 17 counties, none of which are China, a country where VR adoption is relatively high but largely dominated by HTC’s Vive headset.