Palmer Luckey, founder of Oculus, has explained in a recent interview that the price of the company’s VR headset, the Oculus Rift, will exceed $350.
When asked by Road to VR if the Rift would still be around $350 — the original “ballpark target” price — when it launches in the first quarter of next year, Luckey told the outlet, “You know, I’m going to be perfectly honest with you. We’re roughly in that ballpark… but it’s going to cost more than that.” He explained that Oculus has added a lot of new technology to its upcoming headset and the price must reflect that.
“And it’s not a matter of ‘oh we’re selling more, we can make more money!,’” Luckey went on, “it’s just the reality that when you make this thing you have to decide what tradeoffs you’re going to make; are you going to optimize for absolute lowest price possible, even if it’s gonna be a lower quality experience? Or do you try to say ‘you know what, this is the first consumer VR headset that were going to be pushing out to people.”
According to Luckey, Oculus wants to keep the price as low as possible, but not at the expense of the experience. “It would really suck if you put something out there and people were like ‘ah man… the Rift is good, but it’s not quite there’,” he said. Luckey admits that he can’t promise a $350 price tag for the Rift, but he’s confident that purchasers will be happy with the price and experience they receive, saying he believes it will be the “best VR headset you can buy.”
Oculus was purchased by FaceBook in 2013 for $2 billion. At a pre-E3 event, Xbox head Phil Spencer announced a partnership between Oculus and Microsoft. A line of “Oculus Ready” computers have also been announced (via GameSpot), with the most expensive “all-in” option totaling around $1,500. Make sure to read our impressions of the Oculus Rift in our E3 preview.
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