Sony priced its planned PlayStation VR headset at $399, well below that of some rival VR headsets, but postponed its global launch to October from a previously planned June to make sure it has enough units to ship along with a wide variety of titles, the company announced.
The number of software titles in development exceeds 160, and more than 50 will launch by the end of the year, Sony said. More than 230 developers and publishers are working on titles, which are designed for use with a PlayStation 4 game console.
The headset and companion processor, which connects to a PS4, also lets users view standard PS4 games and videos on a virtual screen up to an equivalent of 225 inches at a distance of about 8 feet. Users will also be able to watch 360-degree photos and videos captured by omnidirectional cameras.
VTR titles expected to launch by year’s end include “Eagle Flight” (Ubisoft), “Eve: Valkyrie” (CCP Games), “Headmaster” (Frame Interactive), “Rez Infinite” (Enhance Games), “Wayward Sky” (Uber Entertainment), “Rigs: Mechanized Combat League,” “Tumble VR,” “Until Dawn: Rush of Blood” and “PlayStation VR Worlds” (SCE WWS). Independent developers and large studios such as 2K Games and Ubisoft are developing games, Sony said.
The headset weighs 12.9 ounces, excluding processor unit, and features a 5.7-inch OLED display, resolution of 1,920 by 1,080, 100-degree field of view, six-axis motion sensing and HDMI.
The PlayStation VR will undercut pricing on rival PC-tethered headsets coming soon, including the $599 Oculus Rift due from Facebook later this month and HTC’s $799 Vive, due in April. Both also require high-performance PCs, further raising the cost of entry. Select high-performance PCs certified as Oculus-ready, for example, are price from $1,049 to $1,699. The PlayStation4 starts at $349.
Other VR headsets, however, undercut Sony’s price, but those headsets, including the $99 Samsung Gear VR, use smartphones that must be used as displays or otherwise tethered to a smartphone. LG, for example, plans a VR headset that connects via USB-C to the company’s new G5 smartphone. Alcatel’s planned Idol 4S smartphone will come with plastic VR goggles that will use the phone as its display.