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HTC Vive Pro expected to go on sale in Taiwan this year

2018/01/26 20:19:18

A woman poses with the Vive Pro, HTC's new and upgraded VR headset, at the 2018 Taipei Game Show Friday. The show will run through Jan. 29. CNA photo Jan. 26, 2018

Taipei, Jan. 26 (CNA) Having already made great efforts to penetrate the local virtual reality market, Taiwan-based smartphone brand HTC Corp. said Friday that the Vive Pro, an upgraded version of its first VR headset Vive, is expected to go on sale in Taiwan in the first half of this year.

Raymond Pao (鮑永哲), HTC's VR new technology division vice president, introduced the Vive Pro to consumers in Taiwan at a news conference in Taipei to coincide with the Taipei Game Show, which kicked off Thursday and will run through Jan. 29.

Pao made the announcement of the Vive Pro Taiwan launch, but remained tight-lipped on its price tag.

HTC unveiled the Vive Pro in Las Vegas a day before the Jan. 9-12 Consumer Electronics Show 2018. The device won the People's Choice award in TechRadar's 2018 CES Awards voted for by the U.K. website's readership.

In addition, HTC has also unveiled the Vive Wireless Adaptor for use with both the Vive and the Vive Pro, which allows wireless connection to a nearby PC.

According to HTC, the Vive Pro has raised the bar in the global high-end VR market, as the device is equipped with dual OLED displays with a resolution that is a 78-percent increase over the existing Vive's head-mounted display.

The Vive Pro also features high-performance headphones with a built-in amplifier that offers a heightened sense of presence and richer sound, HTC said.

Its booth at the Taipei Game Show was crowded with visitors interested in the Vive Pro who were able to experience popular games such as adventure series Doom 4 VR and Fallout 4 VR.

Turning to the Vive Focus, a standalone VR headset unveiled in November, Pao said HTC has no immediate plans to launch the device in Taiwan, because there is insufficient Chinese content to support it.

HTC entered the VR business in a bid to diversify its product portfolio and add sales to offset the impact of escalating competition in the global smartphone market.

The Vive was first introduced to the market in 2015 and went on global sale in April 2016.

Despite its efforts in developing its VR business, HTC still remains in the red, with market analysts saying that VR operations have only contributed toward a small fraction of the smartphone brand's sales.

In the third quarter of 2017, the company posted a loss per share of NT$3.8, a net loss for the 10th straight quarter.

(By Jiang Ming-yan and Frances Huang)