This week Valve announced that the Index headset and other hardware can now be bought and shipped to Canada and Japan, in addition to 28 other regions.
Update (November 22st, 2019): Valve announced this week that the Index headset and other hardware is now available in Canada and Japan, making the headset available in a total of 31 countries (full list here).
Valve has a special shipping FAQ page for Canada. Shipping Index to Japan is facilitated through Valve’s partner Degica.
Index is still notably not available in some major regions like China, nor in Australia, Africa, South America, or Russia.
The new regional availability comes alongside this week’s announcement of Half-Life: Alyx.
Update (August 24th, 2019): Valve said Friday that the Index headset is now “fully in stock and shipping in all available countries!” The headset was facing a backlog of orders for some time following its launch earlier this year. Index is currently available in 30 countries, and Valve says they have plans to expand regional availability in the future.
Index is sold in several packages, the ‘full kit’ (which includes the headset, controllers, and base station trackers), a kit which includes the headset and controllers without base stations, and a standalone headset kit. While all three of these packages containing the headset are immediately available for purchase, it seems that the stock of Index controllers may still be constrained, as the standalone controller package still asks customers to ‘Reserve’ an order to be later notified of availability. Meanwhile, the standalone base station package appears to be immediately available.
Original Article (July 25th, 2019): Valve announced today that the Index ‘full kit’ (which includes the headset, controllers, and base station trackers) is ready for immediate shipping in the US. At launch, the $1,000 full kit was quickly backordered and wasn’t estimated to ship until the end of September; the company said that “initial quantities were outpaced by demand.”
The other SKUs (the headset and controllers without base stations, and individual packages of the headset, controllers, or base stations) were also backordered so far that Valve eventually stopped taking orders or offering an estimated shipping date altogether and instead asked customers to reserve their spot in line to be notified of availability. All SKUs except for the full kit and the individual base stations remain backordered with an option to reserve a spot for ordering, but Valve says they will soon have immediate availability of those as well.
Valve also expects that Index hardware will become readily available in international territories as well. Currently the headset is available in 30 countries across the US and EU (a complete list can be found here), though it isn’t clear if or when they will expand into other regions. We’ve reached out for more info.
Apparently coinciding with the increasing availability of the headset, Valve put Index front and center on the Steam store front page for all to see, with a “Get it now” call to action and a $500 advertised price (the cost of just the headset alone).
Valve said prior to Index’s launch that the headset would see a “limited initial release” to the US and EU first, and that the company would ramp up their manufacturing and expand availability based on demand; this is perhaps the first sign of that ramping process.