Sony announces PlayStation VR price, launch date

If you’re excited to jump into the new, sophisticated age of virtual reality, but aren’t ready to shell out the big bucks for the Oculus Rift or HTC’s Vive, you’ll have to wait a little longer for a cheaper option.

Sony announced Tuesday that it’s pushing back the release date for its PlayStation VR headset until October. The company previously was expected to launch the device in the first half of this year.

“That is a bit later than the timeframe we previously stated, and I want to thank everyone for their patience and continued support,” CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, said in a blog post. He added, “PlayStation VR represents a transformative experience in gaming, and we wanted to take the time needed to launch with a broad variety of content and a sufficient supply of hardware.”

To budget-minded VR enthusiasts, the delay may be a small setback, considering that the device will offer some big advantages over the Rift and Vive.

Sony announced that the PlayStation VR will cost $400; by contrast, the Rift costs $600 and the Vive, $800.

And those numbers actually understate the difference in cost. Consumers will need to have a PC costing around $1,000 to run the Rift, and potentially one that costs even more to run the Vive. By contrast, to run the PlayStation VR, consumers will just need to have a PlayStation 4, which starts at $350 new.

While the Rift and the Vive are likely to appeal to a limited set of game enthusiasts who can afford the needed set-up, the PlayStation VR has a potential market of somewhere around 36 million, which is the number of PlayStation 4s that have already been sold.

Some 50 VR games for Sony’s device are expected to launch by the end of the year, Sony said. Another 110 games for the PlayStation VR are in various stages of development.

Among the top titles heading to the device is a version of EA’s “Star Wars: Battlefront.”

Photo: Sony’s PlayStation VR headset (courtesy of Sony).

 

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