New details on the Oculus Rift have emerged online earlier this week, with pre-orders finally going live yesterday. Back when the headset was still in development, pricing was definitely one of the more controversial issues and a few hours ago CEO Palmer Luckey has talked more about the matter in a reddit AMA.
Mr. Luckey has admitted that he has handled the messaging poorly, as the company originally revealed that the Oculus Rift and a PC with recommended specs would cost roughly $1500, with outlets picking the story up as “Oculus Rift Will cost $1500.
“I handled the messaging poorly. Earlier last year, we started officially messaging that the Rift+Recommended spec PC would cost roughly $1500. That was around the time we committed to the path of prioritizing quality over cost, trying to make the best VR headset possible with current technology. Many outlets picked the story up as “Rift will cost $1500!”, which was honestly a good thing – the vast majority of consumers (and even gamers!) don’t have a PC anywhere close to the rec. spec, and many people were confused enough to think the Rift was a standalone device. For that vast majority of people, $1500 is the all-in cost of owning Rift. The biggest portion of their cost is the PC, not the Rift itself.”
For quite some time, the Oculus Rift actually pricing was a mystery. Mr. Luckey defended the choice of not revealing pricing too much ahead of pre-orders opening, stating that it wouldn’t have made sense without revealing all the details on the headset.
“Price and preorders usually go hand in hand, and there is usually not an advance announcement of preorders. In this case, people were begging us to give them some advance notice of when they would go live – that is why we decided it would be a good idea to announce preorders ahead of time. It did not make sense to announce price in a vacuum without all the other info.”
The Oculus Rift headset will be released sometime during April.