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HTC’s leaked Vive Flow headset might offer portable VR

For many weeks, HTC has been teasing a stand-alone VR headset that seems to be more portable than the Vive Focus 3. All of these teasers share a common theme of comfort and leisure, and they show a tube-shaped carrying pouch for the VR headset, along with a tagline of “Go with the Flow.” But ahead of the official launch on October 14, seasoned leaker Evan Blass revealed key details about the upcoming HTC Vive VR headset, including its design, features, price, and availability.

The set of images shared by Blass suggest many of the uses of the upcoming HTC Vive headset. Besides confirming what the headset will look like, the images confirm the moniker, Vive Flow, which until now had only been speculated about based on the teasers.

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As visible in the images, the headset sports a golden-tinted glass that resembles the company’s Project Photon concept smart glasses showcased in 2020. Meanwhile, another image shows onboard processing capabilities, which indicates the HTC Vive will be a stand-alone headset. This corroborates the earlier listing of a VR AIO (all-in-one) product by HTC on the Bluetooth SIG website.

Active cooling system and onboard processing on HTC Vive Flow standalone VR headset.

The temples of the smart glass will be foldable for ease of use and portability, and they will feature earphones for an “immersive spatial audio” experience. The images also suggest the headset is designed to focus on “well-being and mindful productivity,” indicating it may have modes to help users meditate when they are not looking for entertainment. The Flow is likely to come with special modes to help users unwind in bed with features for improved sleep.

Leaked material also shows that HTC Vive Flow will connect to a smartphone via Bluetooth — that’s in addition to the wired USB-C connection shown in another image. Users will be able to cast content directly onto the headset from their smartphone and use the phone as a handheld controller.

— E (@evleaks) October 13, 2021

— E (@evleaks) October 13, 2021

Lastly, the leaks confirm that the HTC Vive Flow will be up for pre-orders starting October 15 for $499. Shipping begins in early November and comes with freebies such as seven free VR content bundles, two months of access to a service called “Infinity Vista,” and a carrying case. While we are unaware of what Infinity Vista might be, Road to VR speculates this could be a toned-down version of HTC’s Vive metaverse — Viveport Infinity.

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