During the Oculus Connect developer’s conference on Thursday, the vice president of product at Oculus VR, Nate Mitchell, told reporters that their Oculus Rift system will be released in the first quarter of 2016.      


Oculus Connect Developer's Conference

Oculus Rift’s release date and price was announced at the Oculus Connect Developer’s Conference last week. (The Guardian)

The Oculus Rift is a virtual reality gaming device that will include a headset, sensor, and an Xbox One controller to help the gamer immerse themselves into their games. In 2014, Oculus announced the device would cost between $200 to $400, but Mitchell said on Thursday that it would cost “at least $300” for everything the system includes. Unlike similar virtual reality products being developed, Oculus isn’t currently allowing customers to pre-order the device.              


“There isn’t a big reason to take your money too far ahead of the device.” said Mitchell. “If you’re going to hand me $300 today, I am not going to be excited to tell you: ‘OK, in nine, 10, 12, 11 months, whatever it is, you’re going to get something in return.’”


Oculus may have made this decision because they want customers to know what they’re getting before they purchase the device. Since the Oculus Rift is a virtual reality gaming system, it can be difficult to show the full extent of the gaming experience in an advertisement. Elizabeth Hamren, the head of marketing for Oculus, believes that it’s challenging to write about the product and said, “how do you show a truly immersive experience in 2D? You’re always selling it short.”      



On Wednesday, the Oculus Rift supported horror game, “Syndrome,” was announced with a trailer, but it was difficult to understand how the gaming experience would change with a virtual reality device. Oculus’ vice president of mobile, Max Cohen, says gamers need to “physically see” the system and what it can do to understand it. Cohen also said, “the best TV commercial in the world will make you say, ‘That looks cool… but I need a demo.’”    


Oculus is considering the idea of offering pre-orders for their gaming system, but this won’t likely occur until the product is close to being released in early 2016.  


Is paying $300 or more for the Oculus Rift too much, or a fair price? Will you test the device before deciding whether or not to purchase it? Leave a comment or talk to me on Twitter @Karbowski_Devon.