HTC annouonced that has just partnered with Hangzhou Shunwang Technology in a move to bring arcade-inspired Vive zones to China's growing Internet café market.

The announcement was made at the company's Vive Unbound event in Beijing, China, where HTC formally debuted its own Vive VR headset. The packed event starred speakers from HTC, Valve and developers who are all collaborating to bring the Vive VR experience to Internet café game players.

Officials from game and animation companies such as Eric Darnell of Baobab Studios, Neville Spiteri of WEVR, Katsuhiro Harada of Bandai, Chet Faliszek of Valve and HTC CEO Cher Wang also gave talks during the event.

Hangzhou Shunwang Technology is one of the biggest Internet café software companies in China. The company's software is used in more than 100,000 Chinese Internet cafés or around 70 percent of the total market, serving more than 100 million users.

HTC and Shunwang will be launching a pilot program wherein players will be allowed to spend 10 minutes in a Vive VR-equipped room for 10 to 30RMB ($2 to $5). The project is currently underway in Hangzhou.

Shunwang, the exclusive partner in the deal, will handle the daily operation, content management system and billing of the Vive zones. HTC will be responsible for the Launcher development for the Vive.

"As the biggest Internet café platform service provider in China, Shunwang will make full use of its existing network and operation capacity in the industry to bring the best VR experience to hundreds of millions of Internet café game players," said Hua Yong, chairman of Shunwang.

While VR technology is still in its early stages in China, it would be interesting to know just how the collaboration will be able to establish both HTC's and Shunwang's positions in the world's biggest potential market for VR.

Perhaps one key challenge that developers will have to deal with is the mass adoption of the technology in China. Global adoption, on the other hand, can be hampered by the lack of a huge library of interesting content.

Analysts are predicting that VR will replace smartphones in popularity in the near future. They forecast that there will be around 2.5 million to 8 million units of VR headsets that could sell in 2016. Companies such as Sony, Oculus and HTC are among the key players in the VR headset manufacturing space with Sony as the leader of the pack.

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