Rift Vs Vive

Oculus Rift Vs HTC Vive

9th December 2015

With the renewed interest in Virtual Reality, and after our first post on the subject, we take a look at the race between the two most promising head mounted displays (HMD): the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive.

The Oculus Rift was the first of the new generation of VR headsets to be announced after the then teenage developer Palmer Luckey made the prototype for what is now the Rift. When the Kickstarter began he intended to make 100 HMDs but after gaming industry legend John Carmack saw the headset and demoed it with Doom 3 BFG Edition at E3, thousands of people got on board. By the end, the Kickstarter had raised almost $2.5 million and VR was back in the news.

As of now a number of competitors are in the race to produce a consumer HMD with the two frontrunners being Oculus, now owned by Facebook, and a partnership between HTC and Valve. The HTC Vive came about after Valve boss, Gabe Newell, saw the potential for VR through the use of an Oculus Rift. Valve reached out to Oculus in the hope of working together but were turned down leading to the partnership with HTC.

The purchase of Oculus by Facebook did not sit well with a lot of people, with talk online that Oculus had 'sold out' so when HTC and Valve announced their own HMD many threw their support behind the HTC Vive. With talk of a consumer version in 2015 HTC/Valve looked to be gaining the upper hand. But with the announcement of 7000 units being made available to developers in the new year and a release date of April 2016 could Oculus get a consumer release out of the door before them?

If Oculus can reach consumers first it may be enough to sway the opinions of all but the most die-hard Vive fans. Enthusiasts are foaming at the mouth to get their hands on a consumer HMD and many will be waiting to hear a release date from Oculus before making a decision.

For those still waiting to build their VR gaming rigs there is a bittersweet upside to this with NVIDIA's announcement of their Pascal GPU and AMD's R9 390X which will both use HBM or High Bandwidth Memory allowing for more, faster RAM. Expected to release in the first half of 2016 these cards may be the answer to smooth framerates in VR.

We have created Virtual Reality apps for leading pharmaceutical clients including Pfizer, we provide interactivity by using gesture-based controllers like Leap Motion. If you'd like to provide your exhibition visitors with a fully immersive, 3D experience then get in touch.