samsung-gear-vr-microsite

Although Samsung hasn’t announced an official price or specific release date for Gear VR, the new VR headset has appeared on the website of an authorized Samsung retailer priced at $245. Samsung has launched an official Gear VR microsite, though they aren’t yet taking pre-orders.

Samsung’s Gear VR announcement earlier this week was met with positive vibes by the VR community. Developers who have worked with prototype versions of the Gear VR hardware say they’re impressed with the experience that the mobile ‘Powered by Oculus’ device is capable delivering.

The release date for Gear VR has only been confirmed by Samsung as specifically as 2014, though there have been some rumblings about a possible Fall release. The company has launched an official microsite for the headset which reveals that Gear VR will include a 16GB microSD car that comes pre-loaded with “a collection of 360-degree videos and 3D movie trailers from major studios.”

See Also: Samsung Gear VR ‘Innovator Edition’ to Launch in 2014 Aimed at Developers and Early-adopters

samsung-gear-vr-virtual-reality-headset

Officially, Gear VR is unpriced. However, the unit has popped up on MobileFun.co.uk, a third party retailer that claims to be a Samsung Authorized Dealer, priced at £150 (~$245).

Given that the Galaxy Note 4, that’s required to power the device, will run around $600 off-contract, the Gear VR experience may not be all that much cheaper than the desktop VR experience. A $1000 gaming desktop ought to be enough to run the most demanding Oculus Rift DK2 demos, plus another $350 for the headset. That puts the difference between the mobile experience and the desktop experience only around $505.

Yet for those who may be interested in getting the Galaxy Note 4 anyway, Gear VR could be a reasonable add-on even at $245, at least according to a quick survey of two folks I know that are waiting for consumer-ready tech before making the plunge into VR.

“I’d have to wait and see what games come out that are supported by it, but I think it would be a great addition to my gaming arsenal,” said one potential Gear VR buyer who is already a user of Samsung phones. “That seems reasonable for bleeding edge tech. At that price, I’d probably wait a few months to make sure there aren’t any major defects (and see if it doesn’t drop some),” she said.

Another individual I spoke with about the possibility of Gear VR running $245 wasn’t deterred.

“Gear VR’s price is much more approachable to me than the alternative VR headsets available considering they require a fairly powerful computer setup to run, which I don’t currently have,” he said.

Would you pay $245 for Gear VR?

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  • Jarom Madsen

    Pretty high entrance fee. The rift is much more approachable since I already have a stellar PC which means I’m just looking at the headset price and not the $600 pricetag for the phone as well. On a whim I’d probably shell out $500 max for the whole thing.

  • seanlumly

    Converting between pounds sterling of a reseller to US dollars is not the most reliable way of foretelling the final North American price…

  • Don Gateley

    That price is totally nuts.

    • kijutsu

      Indeed. I was planning on getting a Note 4 and Gear VR but if the Gear VR truly is 250$ than I’m out and might even buy an iphone6 instead. I can just wait and see I guess.

  • Curtrock

    The financial equation for Gear VR only makes sense for Android users. I’m going to buy the new iPhone 6, therefore I will NOT be dropping $600 for a phone I don’t need, or want. $250 for the GEAR VR headset is fine, but unless you happen to want a Note 4 anyway, we are approaching a $1000 investment. If you compare this to the cost of a PS4/Xbox, or even a PS Vita, GEAR VR is a very premium experience. Good way to push the Note 4, but not so good for iOS users like me. ( this presents an opportunity to experience VR for all the whiners complaining that the CV1 is taking too long, though…)

    • brandon9271

      I know the Gear VR is a little more than just a shell with optics in it but $250 seems like a lot of money when you also have to buy the phone. It can’t cost that much to produce. I would say it needs to come down to the $100-150 range to really take off. Samsung surely knows that the money to be made is selling apps so even if they take a loss it would be worth it in the long run.

  • Druss

    This is hilarious. Who’s going to be using this thing? Here is Oculus trying to keep the experience as cheap and accessible as possible and Samsung introduces a very expensive phone with a VR-accessory that costs almost as much as the Rift itself and doesn’t have positional tracking. Again, who is going to be using this?!

    This will be THE definition of a DOA product.

    • brandon9271

      yeah.. plus, with all the ‘Johnny come lately’ HMDs cropping up Oculus needs to put of CV1 pronto! all if would take is a few bad experiences to taint the public perception of VR irreversibly. Hell, there have been enough bad 3d films to make even a 3D enthusiat like myself opt for the 2d version 99% of the time. VR could suffer the same if they aren’t careful.

  • kate

    A uk price of £150 is equal to a US price of $150

    why?

    because typically when US companies come to the UK they keep the price the same but chnage the currency

    why?

    to put it simply all prices in the UK by law have the sales tax rat included in the price unless you are exclusively selling to a company that reclaims it sales tax

    OK but what diffrence does that make

    UK sales tax is 20%

    Also
    the product must meet european warranty criteria i.e. minimum 2 years – which costs money
    There is alos localisation costs for selling teh same product across europe
    There is the aditional localised advertising costs specific to around 20ish languages
    Any profits may are taxed at the Europena norm i.e. what the US was charging under Reagan
    All these cost add additional sums to the cost of doing business in Europe
    Also:
    the product must pay import duties which are typically about 5% of the price
    at this point
    At that point the sales tax is applied at 20%

    so give some numbers?

    I can’t quantify the eadditional costs of doing business in europe for Samsung is so I can’t give accurate figures there
    But I can explain why people in europe don’t parallel import from the states much

    say i was buying a DK1 headset that i had bought on ebay for $150
    I would have to pay shipping and insurance on that say $40 (that’s pretty low its more likley to be $60+)
    OK on import I would have to pay about 5% tax on the $190 it had cost me to import lets call it $200
    I would then have to pay UK sales Tax on that $200 at 20% i.e $240
    i just looked up on Xe.com what $240 is in uk pounds £146.978
    thats why typically US compaies swap the currency symbol and keep the numbers the same

    but that proves nothing – its not the same maths at all

    OK the second proof is actually even simplier
    It what US and Intrenational companies have been doing for at least 40 years in the UK
    why would Samsung be different

    Ane the third proof is a variation of the second proof
    when I fisr saw the price of $245 I immediatly went
    OK how do I feel about spending another £250 on a VR headset?
    I hope it becomes a cheap or free buyin for getting a Note 4 on a two year contract!

    So triust me – the price in the US for the Gear VR will be $150

    OK so how do you stand such huge markups on your prices?

    a. because its invisible, its included in the price, thus I forget about sales tax
    b. because i like paying taxes as I get nice things back like free medical insurance with no co-pays etc
    It costs me exactly £0 a year for all the medical issues I have
    for example a couple of years ago i was blue lit into the ER by ambulance on a weekly basis for months and I was seen immediatly on arriving
    bill so far = £0
    So paying a bit more sales tax seems pretty fair to me

  • AzumaNushi

    What is Samsung thinking? Similar smartphone accessories like Refugio3D and the upcoming Immersion Vreilia Go cost less then $50.00.

    • Don Gateley

      Maybe $245 is the cost of a two year contract for the Note 4 bundled with the Gear VR. That would sorta make some sense at least.

      • kate

        As ever we do it differently in the UK
        but to give a ref point for the UK
        for a note 3! EE are offering 1000minutes, unlimited texts and 1GB of data for £20 PCM over 2 years plus £184 for the phone
        note 4 is listed but no plans to buy just yet

    • Paul James

      Whilst I agree the price seems a little high, remember that unlike the other two devices you mention, GearVR has active hardware in it which couples with the phone to give you that 20ms motion to photon latency.

      It’d be interesting to see any call plan packages in the UK that might try to bundle the GearVR with the Note 4. That may end up being the most cost effective way to get it.

  • John Pillow

    It seems it already received a price-cut, now at $199. Source:

    http://www.androidcentral.com/samsung-gear-vr-headset-now-has-price-199