HTC unveils standalone, wireless Vive Focus with 'world-scale' tracking

Leigh Mccormick
November 15, 2017

At the moment, the device, which was initially teased at Google I/O 2017 in May, will be available exclusively in China.

With this announcement, HTC Vive has put all of its attention onto the Chinese market with the Focus and the Wave platform.

HTC's standalone headsets weren't much of a secret really. This preempted the release of a standalone Daydream VR headset, forcing HTC to cut its losses and focus on the market where it has an advantage. In addition to this, HTC has also released its View Wave SDK for third-party vendors so that they can make accessories for the new headset.

We're delighted that the VIVE Wave VR open platform is receiving such strong industry support from both hardware partners and developers. "We still have a great relationship with Google, but will not be bringing a standalone device to western markets on Daydream", said Patrick Seybold, Vice President, Communications & Social Media.

The Vive Focus features inside-out 6-degrees-of-freedom "world-scale" tracking. The initial focus will be on the Chinese market.

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HTC has officially pulled the plug on the standalone virtual reality ( VR ) headset the company was set to build with Google.

The internal hardware is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor using Qualcomm's VR platform, making it quicker than key rival Oculus Go, which runs a Snapdragon 821.

The headset will also benefit from access to a huge library of VR content through HTC's Viveport distribution portal.

While the Vive Focus is a standalone device that is not connected to a computer or a smartphone, it has numerous same features as a high-tech machine, HTC said. The new HTC Vive Focus will debut in China in early 2018 and follow for the rest of the world later in the year. However, unlike the HTC Vive as well as other standalone VR headsets, you don't need a phone nor a PC-ready rig to operate the headset.

HTC has additionally partnered with VR development platform Unity Technologies to enable one-click publishing of VR content on to Viveport library, through which the developments will directly debut on the Vive Wave platform.

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