Vive Focus Is HTC's New Standalone, Wireless VR Headset

Sorry, Westerners. It's coming to China exclusively.

Credit: HTC

Tech company HTC unveiled its first wireless, standalone virtual reality headset for the China market yesterday. The Vive Focus is specifically designed to appeal to a mass market audience. It has a six-degrees-of-freedom head-mounted display, easy on-off capabilities, and a high-resolution AMOLED screen. Most importantly, it doesn't need a PC or smartphone to function. 

HTC isn't the first company to announce a standalone VR headset in recent months. Facebook announced its own device, the Oculus Go, back in October. It costs $199 and ships early next year. While HTC says the Focus will reduce the total cost for users to own a premium VR device, it hasn't revealed a price or launch date.

The Focus will use HTC's new open VR platform and toolset called Vive Wave. The company hopes Vive Wave will help bring together the highly fragmented Chinese mobile VR market and make it easier for third-party partners to produce content. Over 35 Chinese and global developers have already built VR content optimized for Vive Wave, HTC says. But, the company's new focus on the Chinese market means it won't be working with Google to bring a standalone Daydream headset to the West, according to Engadget. Google and HTC reportedly reached a $1.1 billion deal back in September to support the Vive, but HTC now appears to be backing out.