HTC Vive

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HTC Vive
Category VR device
Developer HTC Corporation, Valve Corporation
Announced 1st March, 2015[1]
Released Developers: 2014[2]
Consumers: 5th April, 2016[3]
Price 800 USD[4] (2016) 1200 USD BE[5] (2016)
Operating system Windows, Linux, OS X
Display OLED
Field of View 110°
Resolution 2160x1200 pixels
Weight 555 g[6]
Controls inertial, hand controllers, Lighthouse base stations, position tracking
Not Standalone

The HTC Vive is a virtual reality device, which was developed by HTC and Valve. It is a wearable device and belongs to the head mounted displays' category. It was shipped as the first device which allows to act and physically move in virtual reality.[7] The interaction with virtual reality is enabled by the headset, controllers and base station sensors. The whole system has to be linked with an appropriate computer.[8] The safety of users is secured by Chaperone system. It allows displaying a real surrounding when needed and warn users if they approach close to an obstacle.[9]

The HTC Vive was primarily created as an entertainment device, but it has also ambition to educate and enhance abilities of its users.[7] The use of HTC Vive in business[10] or therapy[11] was taken into account at present. There are also great expectations that virtual reality devices as the HTC Vive could bring a new approach to the visualisation of scientific models.[12] The wide range of its usage mirrors the further partners of the project which are e.g. Google, Lionsgate, HBO[8] or BMW[10].

Main Characteristics

The HTC Vive is fully enclosed but it has to be connected to a personal computer, hence it is not a standalone device. It has total resolution of 2160 x 1200 pixels and, on the contrary to other headsets, it has an aspect ratio 9:5. The refresh rate of images is 90Hz[8] and the field of view is approximately 110°. The HTC Vive consists of a head mounted display, two controllers, two base station sensors, ear buds and it is shipped with copies of the video games Fantastic Contraption, Job Simulator and 3D painting tool Tilt Brush. The headset is made from black plastic with 32 sensors placed on its surface.[4] The sensors are located into various directions in order to enable a precise tracking of user’s movements.[13] In the middle of the headset is a frontal camera which is a one part of Chaperone system.[8] The optics is mediated by two Fresnel lenses, which are considerably lighter than standard lenses.[14] It fits all shapes of face and glasses can be worn in it since the specific settings are adjusted by foam lining. Headphones are not a part of the headset. Users could use theirs or they could use ear buds which are shipped with the headset. The headset is linked with user’s computer by cables. Besides the headset, virtual reality is influenced by two motion controllers. They are crowned by a circular motion sensor and contain buttons and a touchpads, which allow various ways of interaction in virtual reality.[15] Recently, the rumours appear that HTC develops another type of controller, which would be more similar to a human hand and which is entitled Manus VR, but it is not shipped with the HTC Vive at present.[16] The tracking of all the sensors is provided by two base station sensors. They have to be installed in the opposite corners of a virtual reality field, in which is supposed the movement of the user. In order to track precisely, they have to place on a high and stable spot. The recommended area of a virtual reality field is approximately 2 x 1.5 m (6,5 x 5 feet).[15]

All of these components assure that the HTC Vive was the first virtual reality device, which truly enabled a movement in virtual reality. In order to make the movement in virtual reality as safe as possible, HTC and Valve invented Chaperone system. It contains several functions which are supposed to protect users in the majority of situations which they could encounter when being in virtual reality. Firstly, it shows them a blue network in their virtual reality environment, if they quit the area bounded by the base stations. Secondly, users could see shapes of the environment, when they request them or when the obstacle is close to them through the camera which in the middle of the headset.[9] The HTC Vive could be linked with a mobile phone and users can received massages or send a simple answers in virtual reality.[17]

The price of the device is 800 USD. In many cases it also requires further investments into user’s computer, since the recommended specification of the system is considerably demanding.[4] Namely:

  • Intel i5-4590 / AMD FX 8350 equivalent or better
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 / AMD Radeon R9 290 equivalent or better
  • 4GB or more
  • HDMI 1.4 or DisplayPort 1.2 or newer
  • 1x USB 2.0 or better port
  • Windows 7 SP1 or newer [18]


The HTC Vive’s main purpose is to entertain and educate its users. It also provides a working field for both scientists and businessmen. Its possible use in therapy is significantly taken into consideration at present.

Company & People

The HTC Vive project is a conjunction of two projects which HTC and Valve run separately. They conjoined their projects in 2014.[13]

  • Peter Chou – former HTC’s Chief Executive Officer who started the project, retired [19]
  • Cher Wang – HTC’s Chief Executive Officer
  • Gabe Logan Newell – Valve’s Chief Executive Officer
  • Claude Zellweger – HTC’s Head of Design
  • Chet Faliszek – Valve’s Writer and the Key Virtual Reality Evangelist and the Developer Relations Liaison of the HTC Vive [20]
  • Dan O'Brien – HTC's Vice-president of Virtual Reality, Planning and Management
  • Phil Chen – HTC’s Chief Content Officer and Founder of the HTC Vive
  • Joel Breton – HTC's Vice-president of Virtual Reality Content Development

Important Dates

  • Valve started a development of their HMD in 2012
  • HTC began with advancement of their VR device in 2013
  • HTC and Valve created a conjoint project in 2014
  • The developers were invited to join the project in 20th October, 2014
  • The first developer kit entitled “-v1” was produced in 1st December, 2014[13]
  • It was firstly announced at Mobile World Congress 2015 in 1st March, 2015
  • A developed version entitled HTC Vive Pre was introduced at Consumer Electronics Show 2016
  • The pre-order started in 29th February, 2016[1]
  • The shipping started in 5th April, 2016
  • The Bussines Edition began shipping in 10th June, 2016[5]

Enhancement, Terapy and Treatment

Health Risks

Ethical Issues

Public & Media Impact and Presentation

Public Policy

Realated Technologies, Projects or Scientific Research


  1. 1.0 1.1 (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  2. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  3. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 (Retrieved August 1, 2016) Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "techradar review" defined multiple times with different content Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "techradar review" defined multiple times with different content
  5. 5.0 5.1 (Retrieved 1st August, 2016)
  6. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  7. 7.0 7.1,review-3513.html (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  9. 9.0 9.1 (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  10. 10.0 10.1 (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  12. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 (Retrieved 1st August, 2016)
  14. tp:// (Retrieved 1st August, 2016)
  15. 15.0 15.1 (Retrieved 1st August, 2016)
  18. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  19. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)
  20. (Retrieved August 1, 2016)