Preorders for the HTC Vive began back in late February, and orders started shipping in early April, but over the past few weeks, the online tech media has been filled with reports about how customers have been facing long delays because of alleged glitches in the order fulfillment process. Reports of cancelled orders and downgraded shipping are all over online message boards and social media, but the company recently announced that all those hiccups and teething issues are now behind it, and that it is now in a position to ship out the device within just three days of receiving an order. While it still remains to be seen how that assurance pans out, the company is now announcing something new regarding its virtual reality headset.
According to a press release from the Taiwanese tech company, the HTC Vive will now come in a 'Business Edition' avatar to address "the huge demand from industries worldwide to employ virtual reality technology in commercial applications". The full package will be available in U.S., Canada, UK, Germany & France from this month itself, with the global rollout to follow over the next few weeks. The 'Vive BE' has been priced at $1,200 and will include the headset itself, along with 2 controllers, 2 base stations, a 3-in-1 cable and 4 face cushions. While the hardware will come with a 12-month warranty, customers of the Vive Business Edition package will also get access to a dedicated customer support line.
The company is already publicizing how some companies, like 3D design software maker Dassault Systèmes, have already embraced the HTC Vive for productivity purposes. According to Mr. Daniel O'Brien, VP of VR at HTC, "with Vive BE, we are answering the overwhelming demand from global industries for a complete VR experience, to provide innovative solutions for their business needs. Expediting the growth of partner organizations through application of Vive technology is an incredibly important part of our ongoing VR strategy, and will ensure Vive continues to be at the forefront of the enterprise sector". Usage of VR in the commercial environment is something that's often talked about, so now is as good a time as any for HTC to start wooing the enterprise sector with its VR offering, seeing as the company is continuing to struggle with its smartphone business.