An enterprise edition of the much-anticipated HTC Vive virtual reality (VR) headset is on its way to the market this month, complementing the company’s plans to make a consumer version of the headset available. The Vive Business Edition, or Vive BE, is designed to capture the huge demand from industries worldwide to employ VR technology in commercial applications, according to the company.
"With Vive BE, we are answering the overwhelming demand from global industries for a complete VR experience, to provide innovative solutions for their business needs,” Daniel O'Brien, vice president of VR at HTC, said in a statement. “Expediting the growth of partner organizations through application of Vive technology is an incredibly important part of our ongoing VR strategy, and will ensure Vive continues to be at the forefront of the enterprise sector."
Business Services and Commercial Licensing
Like the previously announced consumer version of the Vive, the Vive BE will come to market in June, the company said. The key difference between the two versions is that enterprise users of the Vive BE will be able to order systems with additional services adapted for business and commercial environments, according to HTC.
Vive BE will also come with commercial licensing, a dedicated Business Edition customer support line, and a 12-month limited warranty. Businesses will be able to buy multiple Vive BE systems, with the option to order large quantities. Like the commercial edition, the Vive BE will be powered by Nvidia Quadro GPUs.
For the price of $1,200, the Vive BE will come with a headset, two controllers, two base stations, a three-in-one cable, and four face cushions. The Vive Business Edition will be launching in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Germany, and France this month, with additional markets launching in the coming weeks.
Ideation, Design, and Creation
The company said it is already working with industry partners to develop new tools to take advantage of the VR technology in a variety of industries, including medical, automotive, and design. HTC's partnership with Dassault Systèmes, for example, has already led to the development of the 3DExperience platform, a collaborative virtual environment businesses can use to create different customer experiences.
"Virtual reality has already proven its appeal among consumers and is now revealing its potential for enterprise," said Olivier Ribet, vice president high-tech industry, Dassault Systèmes. "Vive helps us provide our customers from all industries with premium virtual reality experiences that offer unlimited perspectives to inspire product ideation and creation."
One of Vive’s key advantages is its ability to deliver room-scale experiences without the need for additional tools, according to HTC. This particular aspect of VR technology is quickly being adopted by commercial users because room-scale VR makes it possible for professional designers to work more interactively with their designs and to view them from multiple angles.