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HTC targets first standalone Vive headset at China

Qualcomm mobile tech will allow new VR device to be "accessible to the masses in China"

HTC is partnering with Qualcomm on a standalone VR headset for the Chinese market, which will use Viveport as its official content platform.

The new headset will use Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835 chip technology, a mobile processor that will allow the device to function without being tethered to a PC.

In a statement released today, HTC Vive's Chinese head Alvin W. Graylin spoke of the momentum within China to "lead the global VR market" as it already does the global mobile market.

"Partnering with Qualcomm to deliver an easy to use and more affordable Vive VR system will enable us to make premium standalone VR widely accessible to the masses in China," he said.

This will be the first standalone Vive headset, but it won't be the only one. Earlier this year, HTC announced that it was working with Google on a standalone headset for the US market, which will be built on Google Daydream and use Google's WorldSense technology.

HTC Vive was the Taiwanese company's entry into the VR market, and that used Valve's SteamVR technology and Steam distribution platform. This new China-focused headset will use HTC's Viveport store as its official content platform.

We talked to HTC's Dan O'Brien and Joel Breton about the current position of its Vive business at E3. To read the interview, follow the link.

UPDATE: A spokesperson on behalf of HTC has reached out to clarify a few details. The standalone headset for China is not a separate device from the Google Daydream version, as has widely been reported. Instead, it's "the same class of standalone VR solution" but a product specifically targeted at the Chinese market. Vive is working with Google to bring the device to the West and with Qualcomm to bring it to China.

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