This year is being set up as the year virtual reality hits the mainstream. Unfortunately, the price of the first VR system to hit the market, the Oculus Rift, may end up keeping virtual reality out of the price reach of the mainstream.
Thankfully, rumors about Sony's virtual reality system, the PlayStation VR, reveal that it might launch at a price that's much lower than expected - $299. That's right. Sony's PlayStation VR will cost about half the price of the Oculus Rift (and even more if the price of the high-end PC system needs to run the Rift are considered).
The $299 pricetag for the PlayStation VR, however, only includes the head mounted display. Accessories such the PS4 camera and PlayStation Move controllers will be sold separately.
According to a certain "sirdomino" over the PlayStation VR subreddit, the user claims to have spoken to a Sony representative who spilled some information to the Reddit user.
The reasoning behind the PlayStation VR accessories being sold separately, for example, is because there are already a significant number of PlayStation players who already own PS4 cameras and PlayStation Move controllers.
To sell the PlayStation VR as a bundle complete with accessories may price the device unjustifiably higher for those who already own the accessories. Sony doesn't want to force its most loyal customers to buy stuff they already have in their homes.
Other tidbits gleaned from the Reddit users post include a $129 price for the starter kit that includes the camera, Move controllers, and a game plus the cost of the standalone PlayStation VR head mounted display. All in all, the total cost for Sony's complete virtual reality setup would cost only about $428 (plus taxes, of course.) Now that's quite a deal.
There's more, too. To increase the lifespan of the first generation PlayStation VR, it's rumored that Sony is also trying to make it compatible with the next generation PlayStation console.
By the time the PlayStation 5 does come out, there will probably also be a better version of the PS VR, but continued support for the first generation device will help maintain and increase Sony's base of virtual reality gamers.