Shipping of the first TPCAST Wireless Adaptors for HTC Vive has been delayed for a few weeks and is now expected by the end of April. In a statement posted on Weixin, TPCAST apologised to pre-order customers, explaining that production and testing processes took longer than originally planned.

Photo courtesy TPCAST

TPCAST’s wireless VR solution has been available for pre-order on the Chinese online Vive store since November 2016, originally promising the Early Edition would ship in Q1 2017. Now that the first batch is delayed until the end of April, the worldwide roll-out, which was announced by HTC at CES for Q2 2017 may also see a similar delay.

The wireless system is one of several new solutions that promise to cut the cord on high-end VR, a technology that will hopefully become a standard feature of tethered VR headsets within the next few years. Priced at $249, TPCAST’s adaptor is an expensive accessory, but some Vive users will feel the convenience and added immersion of a tether-free experience justifies the cost; less price-conscious out-of-home VR businesses like VR arcades may find the tech suitable as well.

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To thank early adopters for their patience and support, TPCAST is adding a free TransQ—a small device capable of mirroring content from a cellphone to an HDTV—to each pre-order, as well as upgrading the Early Edition versions of the Wireless Adaptor to the larger 20,000 mAh battery, good for ~5 hours of continuous use, according to the company, compared to ~2 hours for the standard version.

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  • RFC_VR

    -Add-on for 2017
    -Integrated for 2018


  • Pre Seznik

    I plan on buying an integrated solution, but glad this is an option.

    • DougP

      Re: “I plan on buying an integrated solution”

      How do you envision this integrated solution to be different?

      I mean, once you’ve slid the tpcast onto the top strap & plugged it in – what would be so different?

      The router stuff sounds inelegant, but it sounds like they’re integrating that. The wireless for the usb will be integrated.

      What tpcast is doing is really just packaging up std for 60ghz hdmi transmission & the usb for rest (/position tracking for hmd).
      So I can see it de-coupled from the hmd, where it could work with multiple hmds… & that compared to “integrated” it will be almost the same.

      Obviously, over time it will become smaller/lighter/etc but I think that near-term integrated wireless is going to be about the same as what this offers.

      • Pre Seznik

        Appart from the usual benefits of integration (compactness, lightness) which are rarely missing, the main reason is I’ll eventually be upgrading my HMD *anyway*. I’m the sort of person who can wait.

        • Tyler Moore

          That’s how I feel about this generation’s wireless options. The Vive Deluxe Strap is a Day 1 purchase for me, but $250 add-on wireless just feels too much. So pumped for Gen 2 headsets fixing all these Gen 1 issues.

  • JMB

    It was a first day buy for me, but the last set of videos detailing the need for an in-line router in my home network to handle USB and positional data makes it a no-go until they have implemented a way that doesn’t channel all my data through a black box.

    • Can you not just set up a VLAN (a network within a network) on your router/switch? Many decent routers allow this to isolate traffic so you can for example have a network for your kids, a business network, a guest network with no folder sharing etc all on the same router. Or are you talking about something else?

  • OgreTactics

    Why has nobody at R2VR (which is by far the smartest VR specialised media) made any obvious and necessary criticism work like this one:

    Not that I agree with all the point, in fact I would go even further as to say that PC-tethered VR is a dead-end as of NOW and that’s why it’s not selling, and while mobile VR is the only way to go, Samsung just doomed the destiny of VR for this cycle just a little more with the not-new GearVR. And she formulated a great argument as to why.

    • Sponge Bob


      tethered VR is NOT a dead end for quite a while – its a necessity

      batteries run out quickly and no one wants to wear heavy batteries on their face anyway (I tried some standalone sets from china – too heavy on a face and only good for 40 min on one charge)

      so until batteries drastically improve the wired VR will stay at least as a required option for any hi-end consumer VR headset regardless of what you write here
      (whether its hdmi/usb/power cable or just power cable – a cable is a cable)

      • DougP

        I dunno… 2hr for headmount battery or 5hr for “pocketable” sounds great to me.
        I think that fits well into VR gaming session duration.
        Heck, most people aren’t going to be hopping+jumping around a VR room for more than 2-5hr before running up against physical constraints (read: getting tired). ;)

        For longer session/seated gaming – it’s irrelevant.
        Making it easy to just “plug in” & be charging while playing makes sense as a long-term design goal.
        And hot-swap batteries for VR gaming marathons that go beyond few hours.

        Same battery – longer w/new HMDs?
        We’ll probably see dramatic improvements in power efficiency with next gen/round of HMDs: from panels other electronics, including Valve’s newer lighthouse sensor being more pwr efficient.
        We could ostensibly see this 2&5hr jump to 4-10hr with next-gen HMD pwr requirements.


        Batteries –
        Also as better battery packs come out (increased energy density/weight) we can see the same TPCast hardware just plugged-in to a 2nd gen battery, again offering worthwhile longer play time on current Vive. Only requiring buying a new battery when avail.

  • Well, cool

  • VR Toast

    There is no doubt that wireless VR is the future, and really necessary to move the industry forward. That being said “bridge tech” like this will likely have a low adoption rate as it’s unlikely to push a consumer that has been on the fence into the early adopter category.

    That being said, I do think it plays an important role going forward by giving consumers the chance to try VR in its wireless form and show what’s coming. I agree with many people who feel that the heavily wired nature of VR today makes it a challenge for consumers.

    There will be a small window of time (and a relatively small market) for wireless adapters and then integrated solutions will take over. While I might buy this I do think it’s really for the super geeky early adopters, everyone else will wait until an integrated solution hits the market.

  • psuedonymous

    Place you bets here folks: how long after the first unit ship until someone takes their apart and finds it’s just the SiBeam MOD6320/6321 WirelessHD transmitter/receiver pair?

    • AnnoyedAnonymous

      Now known as DVDO after they were bought out

  • Holyphyre

    Do I really want all of that EMF sitting and focused at the top of my head? Hmm….

    • Caven

      The headset is going to be receiving video, not transmitting it. Unless you plan to wear your computer on top of your head, the worst you’ll have to contend with is the equivalent of a Bluetooth transmitter for relaying the tracking data back to the computer. If you’re willing to use a Vive in the first place, you’re basically already exposed to that, since the controllers communicate with the headset.

      Also, there’s no incentive for transmitters to focus the signal toward the head. That just wastes energy broadcasting into a medium that will only absorb the energy. Ideally, transmitters should be designed to broadcast away from your head where possible. Worst case scenario is an omni-directional antenna, which still means the energy is evenly radiated, not focused at your head.

  • yag

    It’s fantastic that we have already an untethered MHD of quality, only one year after the beginning of the VR era. Can’t wait to see what Oculus will show now…

  • ymo1965 .

    Personally I wouldnt want a five hour battery capacity. The two hour one is more than enough.