September 12, 2019－ HTC VIVE has today announced features and functionality of the new Vive Cosmos headset, including upcoming pricing and availability, and pre-order bonuses. Vive Cosmos is the latest PC-based virtual reality (VR) system, which the company states has been created with a new level of accessibility and ease of use, and designed to grow with users over time through a modular faceplate design that can change the functionality of the headset, such as the newly announced Vive Cosmos External Tracking Mod.
Cosmos will launch globally on October 3 at a price of USD $699, with pre-orders starting September 12.
“Since Vive began our VR journey, we’ve continued to refine and improve on what a premium VR experience can and should be,” said Daniel O’Brien, GM, Americas, HTC Vive. “Cosmos offers an unmatched experience and is also our most versatile headset yet—with inside-out tracking, options in the future for different faceplates, unlimited content in the box, and the new user interface, we see limitless possibilities for XR customers.”
Vive Cosmos was “built to adapt to the needs of VR customers with ease, versatility, and performance at the forefront,” according to the company. The all-new Vive tracking system offers a simplified setup with six camera sensors for inside-out tracking. Cosmos features a 2880 x 1700 combined pixel resolution (an 88% increase over the original Vive), which will help to deliver clear text and graphics. All-new LCD panels reduce the distance between pixels and combined with real RGB displays minimize screen-door effect.
The Vive Cosmos features a flip-up design to the headset that allows users to quickly switch between VR and the real world, without disrupting VR journeys. Improved ergonomics and comfort allow for longer VR experiences and integrated on-ear headphones provide fully immersive sound. Cosmos also features completely redesigned controllers that maximize functionality within VR and offer extended comfort during longer play sessions. Cosmos is also compatible with the Vive Wireless Adapter for those who want to enjoy moving in VR without being tethered.
First ‘Mod’ Announced
With a modular faceplate design, the Vive Cosmos has been designed with upcoming accessories to change the functionality of the headset and to offer customers the ability for their headset to grow over time. The first official “mod”, announced today, is the Vive Cosmos External Tracking Mod for customers that want to continue to use their existing Lighthouse base stations for tracking scenarios with the headset. This first base station-compatible mod supports Vive’s ecosystem of peripherals including the Vive Tracker. This new mod will be available in Q1 of next year.
Vive Cosmos comes with a 12-month Viveport Infinity subscription during the pre-order period, meaning every customer who pre-orders their Cosmos by October 2 will receive a 12-month Viveport Infinity redeem code in their box. Viveport Infinity gives unlimited access to hundreds of top-rated VR apps, games, and videos, as well as premium videos from brands like GoPro, Discovery Channel, and Animal Planet. In tandem with the Vive Cosmos launch, Viveport Infinity will also be adding new titles to the service, including: Doctor Who: The Edge of Time by Maze Theory, Playstack, and BBC; Eleven Eleven by Syfy; Battlewake by Survios; Gloomy Eyes by Atlas V and 3dar; Swords of Gargantua by Yomuneco and gumi; and MLB Home Run Derby VR by MLB.
Vive Reality System
Vive Cosmos will be the first headset to offer the ‘Vive Reality System’, a reimagined core software experience for Vive. The company states that “The Vive Reality System is an entirely new design philosophy for VR, offering an extension of life to make VR feel less like launching apps and more like stepping between worlds.”
The Vive Cosmos will feature a redesigned user interface called ‘Lens’ to help users navigate XR and Viveport Infinity applications, and a new, dynamic home space called ‘Origin’. The Origin space is the launchpad for VR applications and interactive experiences that will grow over time.
Vive Cosmos will be available for pre-order online from HTC on vive.com as well as through select retailers Amazon.com, Best Buy Canada, B&H Photo, GameStop, Newegg.com, and Walmart.com.
Vive Cosmos Specs
- Screen: Dual 3.4″ LCD diagonal
- Resolution: 1440 x 1700 pixels per eye (2880 x 1700 pixels combined)
- Refresh rate: 90 Hz
- Field of view: 110 degrees
- Audio: Built-in stereo headphones
- Required PC connectivity: USB 3.0, DisplayPort 1.2
- Peripheral Ports: USB-C 3.0, proprietary connection to mods
- Tracking: no minimum space requirements for standing/seated, minimum 2m x 1.5m for room-scale mode
- Module Faceplates: Vive Motion Mod (ships with Cosmos) and Vive Cosmos External Tracking Mod (sold separately)
- Vive Wireless Adapter support: Yes, sold separately with attach kit. Available PCIe slot required
Image credit: HTC VIVE/YouTube
About the author
Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past five years.