HTC at CES 2019 introduced the Vive Cosmos, their latest headset. However, this headset is neither a replacement nor an upgraded version of their previous and original Vive. Vive Cosmos is not necessarily a ‘Vive 2’. HTC has unveiled four other different headsets such as Vive, Vive Pro, Vive Focus, and Vive Cosmos.
With a whole array of new headsets, HTC is trying to appeal to different kinds of customers by catering to their different needs. This is most appropriate to the Vive Cosmos as it is designed keeping in mind a certain target of people who are enthusiastic about buying headsets but do not so owe to their complexity.
Dan O’Brien, HTC’s GM for the Americas, said that 85% of customers who are interested in buying new headsets do not do so, stating the setup complexity as their main problem. HTC has tried to simplify things by putting an inside-out tracking system on Cosmos.
This will enable the headset to be connected to the PC using a single cable, and no external beacons would be needed for tracking. On top of that, HTC has also introduced a new software experience which is called Vive Reality System. HTC claims that Cosmos could run from a smartphone or lower-end PCs one day. HTC Vive Cosmos will eventually launch in the latter part of this year.
We’ve set out this year to bring everyday computing tasks into VR for the first time. Through the collaboration with Mozilla and Amazon Web Services, we’re closing the gap in XR computing, empowering Vive users to get more content in their headset, while enabling developers and businesses to quickly create content for these consumers. – Michael Almeraris, Vice President of Partnerships and Content, HTC VIVE
Apart from the announcement of the Vive Cosmos, HTC has announced several new collaborations with Mozilla Firefox Reality and Amazon Sumerian. Mozilla Firefox Reality will become the default web browser for headsets like Vive Pro and the Vive Cosmos. The collaboration with Amazon Sumerian will help developers to concept, test, and publish VR-optimized websites without having any specialized programming experience.
Many industries are adopting XR technologies for a wide range of uses, including training simulations, virtual concierge services, enhanced online shopping experiences, virtual tours, and more. – Roche, General Manager, Amazon Sumerian
Until now, creating realistic XR experiences required developers to have specialized programming skills and learn unique specifications and deployment procedures, adding complexity to the process. Together with HTC and Mozilla, HTC claims to be making it easier for developers to build and distribute VR applications using nothing more than a browser and a URL.