The HTC Vive virtual reality (VR) head-mounted display (HMD) is being demonstrated all over the world in the run up to its limited 2015 launch. Both creators HTC and Valve have been adamant in getting as many people as possible to sample the device at the likes of videogame and tech events. It’s also taken the kit to universities across the US over the past few months. The kit’s most recent stop was at the Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, where it seems to have made a strong impression with students.
The Duke Chronicle, which serves as the university’s own independent student-run newspaper, reported that Duke had the highest number of demonstrations and the most registration interest of all the universities the kit has visited thus far. Students were able to sample a range of demos at its showcase, including a look at the Tilt Brush VR creation application, Valve’s own Aperture Science demo, and what appears to be TheBluVR: Encounter.
According to the publication, the kit left a lasting impression on students. “[The experience] seems like you are actually walking around the virtual space,” freshman Jasmine Lu said of the experience. “Mix that with really stunning visuals and sounds—as my roommate who tried it said, ‘it’s better than anything I could have dreamed.’”
As already mentioned, the HTC Vive is expected to launch in a limited fashion at some point this year, though the window for this to happen is quickly running out. Following this a wider release is expected in Q1 2016, which is around the same time that the Oculus Rift is expected to launch. Valve and HTC’s HMD boasts Room-Scale user tracking in which players can move across an area of up to 15-feet by 15-feet in the real world and have those movements replicated within the given experience. It also comes with a pair of position-tracked controllers.
VRFocus will continue to follow the HTC Vive closely, reporting back with the latest updates on the kit.