Virtual reality is difficult to understand until you try it, and now HTC is making it easier to do just that. The company announced April 7 that its new Vive headset will be available in certain Microsoft and GameStop stores for potential customers to try before committing $799 toward the device.
Interested shoppers can try the Vive in 30 Microsoft stores this year, with the flagship location in New York City, the store at Bellevue Square in Washington, and Microsoft at City Creek Center in Utah being the first to display the device. The headset is set to arrive at the Microsoft store in Colorado’s Park Meadows Mall later this week.
GameStop plans to start hosting Vive demonstrations in about 10 of its shops by mid-April. You can also preorder the system for a June delivery at participating retail stores.
The announcement comes just two days after the Vive began shipping to its first customers in April 5. The Vive, along with the Oculus Rift, is one of the first high-end virtual reality headsets for consumers. The Vive uses sensors to track users’ movement in physical space so that it can accurately translate those motions to the virtual world. Unlike the Rift, the Vive comes with two motion controllers designed to enable more realistic interactions with objects in the digital space. (Similar Oculus controllers are scheduled to ship later this year.)