This week is already brimming with virtual reality news, but Oculus founder Palmer Luckey just dropped another detail. Pre-ordering a Rift gets you EVE Valkyrie. We knew that much. But it also gets you something else.
Those that get in on the first wave of pre-orders will also be locking up their spot in line to order Oculus’ VR controllers. Called Touch, the motion-enabled haptic input/output devices, will bring along a new wave of content.
The controllers were originally due a short period after the Rift’s first quarter 2016 launch. That was recently changed to the second half of the calendar year.
Luckey also confirmed that the Rift will carry a subsidized price. What this means is that Oculus will be selling it at as a loss-leader. This is similar to how consoles and software are sold. The platform holder takes a loss on hardware, but makes it up by building a bigger install base and collecting licensing revenue from software sales.
While we still don’t know the price of the Rift, this helps us set our expectations a bit in advance of pre-orders opening tomorrow. If you want one, get ready to order at 8 a.m. Pacific / 11 a.m. Eastern.
Luckey says that the company will keep taking pre-orders without risk of “selling out.” If the company runs out of stock, it will just shift delivery date later.
Now that we know for certain that Rift headsets are being subsidized, it seems more likely that we’re looking at a $500 price point. Going higher puts Oculus at risk of repeating Sony’s PlayStation 3 error, crossing into pricing territory at which even enthusiastic early adopters might balk. We’ll find out for certain tomorrow, though.