HTC has been planning to release a new HTC Vive Flow VR headset for some time now, and it looks like their new product has just been leaked ahead of the Taiwanese firm’s official announcement.
The new virtual reality headset called HTC Vive Flow has yet to be announced. But footage of it has already been leaked by prolific industry source Evan Blass. @evleaks revealed the design of the HTC Vive Flow, which oddly doesn’t look like a VR headset at all, but a pair of bulky.
On the first images of the HTC Vive Flow, it is apparently revealed that the virtual reality headset is connected to a wearable device. It could be a smartphone or tablet, or even a laptop.
Original Magic Leap Headset
And, due to its looks, the Vive Flow doesn’t seem to have a strap that takes the user’s entire head. In fact, it appears to use glasses-like temples, which could mean it’s much lighter and more compact than any other helmet before it. The advertised price is $ 499.
In a report from The Verge, a few more details about the HTC Vive Flow were suggested based on a few more images. First of all, HTC’s new VR headset has a cooling fan for all of these internal components, as well as for internal processing. As for the device to which it is connected, it could be a tube resembling the one that came with the original Magic Leap headset. Since HTC won’t be announcing Vive Flow until October 14, there is no official information on what kind of hardware it uses.
A Wi-Fi headset?
The few elements that we know come from bits of information obtained by RoadToVR. According to the site, new regulatory documents submitted by HTC to the United States Federal Communications Commission (US-FCC) revealed details such as the model number of the headset (2Q7Y100), which does not appear to match previous headsets.
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Another detail potentially reveals that the HTC Vive Flow is largely self-contained. Wi-Fi test reports appear to be included on the FCC file, to ensure the Wi-Fi range is within legal limits. It also appears to use an 802.11 ac adapter, or Wi-Fi 5 , while Wi-Fi 6 is already available. This Wi-Fi adapter makes it very different from other dedicated VR headsets, which tend to use some form of Bluetooth.
The Verge speculates that the cylindrical object in the middle of the bag could be something to provide a bit more graphical grunt to the device, similar to the Magic Leap’s Lightpack, though to us it looks like a plain old carry case — something that’s mentioned as a pre-order bonus in the final slide.
While there are plenty who will go to extreme lengths to have a mobile VR experience without Facebook, for the majority of consumers that could be a leap too far. But a lot depends on what the device actually does, which will likely be confirmed at an HTC event tomorrow, revealingly titled “Go with the Flow”. One slide intriguingly suggests that the device is built for “well-being and mindful productivity,” which is certainly a USP.
In other words, something’s coming, and while you should certainly take any leaks with a pinch of salt, Blass’ pedigree here is second to none. And while some have pointed out the similarity between one shot and a piece of stock photography, that may say a bit more about how publicity shots are constructed than be the smoking gun of evidence that we’re going to be disappointed on Thursday.
Anyway, we’ll know more tomorrow!