Oculus Rift Announces Retail Price/ Available For Pre-Order
The answer many people were wondering for nearly three years now was answered today. As of today, January 6th, 2015, at precisely 8 am Pacific Time, the Oculus Rift officially went up for pre-orders on the Oculus website. Thusly, the price of the Oculus Rift was announced as $599 USD. First shipments of the Rift will start on March 28th. Though, if you were to try and pre-order now, your shipment would not arrive until an undisclosed day within May. The headset and cables to connect it will be released packaged alongside: a wireless Xbox One controller, Rift remote, and two games – Eve: Valkyrie, and Lucky’s Tale.
Aside from announcing the set price and shipment dates, Oculus has released their official spec sheet based on the minimum requirements needed to comfortably run the headset. The minimum requirements are as follows:
● Graphics Card: NVIDIA GTX 970 / AMD R9 290 equivalent or greater
● Processor: Intel i5-4590 equivalent or greater
● Memory: 8GB+ RAM
● Output: Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output
● i\Input: 3x USB 3.0 ports plus 1x USB 2.0 port
● Operating system: Windows 7 SP1 64 bit or newer
If the above requirements are above and beyond what you have, Oculus has also informed people that starting February they can pre-order custom built PCs that are “Oculus Ready”. Expectedly, these PCs are very much within the high-end frame and begin at $1499.
Yes, people, VR is here – well, almost- and, yes, VR is expensive. In fact, many people have been storming the interwebs with more complaints than not about the price. These claims of course are not without their merits, especially when considering the last dev kit released for the Rift cost $350; nearly almost half of the price of the consumer version. Though I empathize with these lamentations, I am not terribly surprised by the high cost of the headset. Like when any new capitalist-driven company releases a new tech device, the price is always higher than most expect it to be. Also, with Oculus releasing their price before both HTC and Playstation, both companies could be taking note at the moment and perhaps restructuring their prices to better compete with the Oculus Rift. Though it is highly likely that the HTC Vive will be a more expensive device, the potential for the Playstation VR to be of a more affordable price is definitely not a fool’s hope.
Whether or not this news comes to you as a positive or negative, I think we can all somewhat breath a sigh of relief that the genesis of consumer VR is just around the bend.