HTC Vive X fund offers initial $100m investment across three cities with the hope of stimulating the virtual reality ecosystem
HTC is continuing the reinvention of itself as a Virtual Reality (VR) firm with the launch of a new fund for startups in order to encourage innovation and interest in the technology.
The Vive X accelerator will provide $100m (£68.5m) in investment young VR companies, along with resources, expertise and access to the company’s technology – including the HTC Vive headset.
Successful applicants that show exciting potential will also benefit from visits to HTC’s offices for “intensive training” with the company’s first-party development studios and to meet key members of the Vive engineering and management teams.
Vive X will initially launch in Beijing, San Francisco and HTC’s native Taipei, with other cities hoped to follow suit soon after.
“We are very excited about gathering the brightest and the most creative minds to join Vive X. Virtual reality is changing the world, yet to do that effectively it needs a healthy eco-system to expand into the mass market,” said Cher Wang, chairwoman and CEO of HTC.
“Through HTC Vive, we look forward to enabling global talent to create interesting and compelling content and to help shape the future of this industry.”
HTC claims to have received interest from both consumer and business audiences for the Vive, which will go on general sale in the UK at a cost of £689 – however units will not start shipping here until next month. The firm sold 15,000 headsets in ten minutes when pre-orders opened in March.
Developed alongside with gaming studio Valve, the device comes with two wireless VR controllers, room scale movement sensors, and a Head Mounted Display (HMD) featuring a built in camera and phone services, plus three VR “experiences” including an app developed by Google that lets users paint in 3D space.
As well as this, users will also be able to receive and respond to both incoming and missed phone calls using HTC’s Vive Phone Services – which also allows users to get text messages and send quick replies and check upcoming calendar invites directly through the headset.
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