January 8 has come and HTC has officially announced the new successor to the Vive: introducing the Vive Pro!
Officially announced at CES 2018, the HTC Vive Pro is a direct upgrade to the original Vive. The first and probably biggest change is that the Vive Pro is now sporting a super enhanced resolution of 2800 x 1600, a 78% increase from the original Vive resolution. Text will be sharper, graphics will be even better, and best of all this should help with the blurry angles that some users have experienced.
The Vive Pro has also abandoned the velcro straps on the sides for securing the headset to your head. Instead, there’s now pulley system much like the one featured on the PlayStation VR. Now you can put the headset on and use the dial to fit it to the size of your head, also improving the center of gravity for the headset. One of our biggest complaints with the original Vive headset was that it became slightly uncomfortable after a while and adjusting via the straps was always a hassle. This has solved both problems!
The headphone jack has also been removed as now there are built-in microphones, which is pretty neat. These headphones have built-in amplifying properties and noise cancellation, which will bring VR games’ audio to life as you’re sucked right into the world.
There’s no price or release date set yet, so stay tuned for further details. What we do know is that the Vive Pro will be purchasable separately. If you’re an existing Vive owner, you can opt to purchase just the new headset, as it’s compatible with the old lighthouses and controllers.
Which brings us back to the interesting “Knuckles” controllers – there was no word of them at all during the show, so we’re wondering if those are coming at a later date as well. At least this means that less stuff for VR enthusiasts to buy, and we’re really glad that HTC is giving us the option to buy just the headset.
In addition to the new headset, HTC also announced what many of us have been waiting for: the Vive Wireless Adapter. Coming Q3 2018, this adapter lets you play VR games without any cords in the way, and the best part is that it’s compatible with both the original Vive headset and the Vive Pro!
Finally, the official software center for the Vive – Viveport – is getting a overhaul and complete redesign. Now you can traverse the Viveport in actual VR space, very similar to Steam’s VR Home. You can preview applications and game in real-time before you decide to buy them, which is pretty nifty.
All in all we’re most excited about the new headset. While the Knuckles controllers remain a mystery, the new headset design looks really great and we can’t wait to try it out for ourselves!