HTC to Develop VR Headset for U Ultra Smartphone

HTC CFO Chia-lin Chang says that they are aiming to bridge the gap between a stay-at-home VR experience like the Vive and a mobile VR headset. That's going to change soon, though.

During a launch event for the U Ultra, HTC announced that it will also be developing a mobile VR headset for its newest smartphone. HTC claims its solution will be "more than just a phone slapped into a headset", though has yet to iterate on the differences with its larger PC-based counterpart.

The phrase "combining mobility with VR" had us questioning if this device could be an add-on to the Vive, like the TPCAST wireless upgrade kit, rather than an entirely different VR product, so we reached out to HTC to clarify the statement.

Not content with its role in the high-end VR market, it appears that HTC will attempt to break into the low-end as well. He did suggest however that it is a device that'll sit somewhere between the full-fledge Oculus Rift headset and a mobile VR headset like Daydream View.

Chang's announcement of the upcoming device reveals HTC's ongoing transition into a VR company, as its core smartphone business continues to struggle.

HTC has posted net losses of NT$3.1 billion (US$100.49 million) or NT$3.77 per share for the fourth quarter of 2016.

An emphasis on virtual reality is a big part of the company's turnaround efforts.

HTC Vive China region General Manager Wong Tsung-ching (汪叢青) reported optimism for the company's VR sales this year. However, it will most likely take up the place between high-end systems like the Vive and smartphone-powered headsets like the Gear VR. However, we have to wait with some patience to know what HTC is really cooking for us!

  • Patricia Jimenez