When it comes to all things HTC, I am very biased, and for good reason. They’ve brought out some of the most brilliant smartphones [introducing stylistic approaches, tech and a focus on audio which many majors dutifully followed]. And when they announced their VR division with Vive, I was very much on board from day one. To top it all, I’ve been always on very good terms with the team at HTC. Which again brings me to the question: Can I be impartial when it comes to a Vive offering?
Turns out, I can indeed.
Now when I first reached the venue for the HTC Vive’s latest Under-NDA briefing, I was almost ready to be underwhelmed. After all, the poster suggested a venture into wireless audio.
Half an hour later, as one among the first in the world to play around with the device, I must say, even for a Vive fan, the Vive Flow is incredible news!
After all, they’ve taken everything that we love in VR and totally bamboozled into a portable form factor. It’s as light as a chocolate bar. The multiple wires and controllers? Gone forever. So what about battery life? Plug it into your phone or onto a battery charger [Vive also announced one of their own powerpacks] and you are good to go. And your primary access point? The omnipresent smartphone that is your controller as your navigate the exciting, topsy turvy world of VR.
And something that touched a chord for me were the diopters that come with the Flow glasses. A perpetual pain paint while using VR glasses has been that near trauma of using it with your power glasses. Well, HTC decided to do something about that, with diopters in the glasses, which let you adjust the power of each and every eye so that you can play VR content glasses-free. Brilliant!
Wearable home theatre and English League aside, understandably HTC has a bet big on VR fitness with the Flow. Plus, there is access to Viveport Verse, which will include avatars and content.
In terms of release dates, HTC Vive is working with Etisalat in the region.