HTC introduces Vive tracker and deluxe audio strap at CES 2017

As expected, HTC did not have a second generation Vive headset to display at their CES 2017 press conference however, they did have quite a bit to talk about for both hardware and software for the HTC Vive. New controllers should include more generalized accessories and even real-world items. The company has not yet disclosed the price for the two VR accessories.

Analysts acknowledged that the new accessories represent incremental improvements to the HTC Vive VR system by increasing the number of devices that users can now take into their virtual gaming worlds.

A Deluxe Audio Strap with in-built headphones was also showcased, which features a new method for re-routing the heavy triple cable which previously hung down the back of the user's neck.

The HTC Vive is a virtual reality headset developed by HTC in partnership with Valve Corporation. Round and three-pronged, it's slightly smaller than the head of an ordinary Vive controller, weighing 85 grams. An example shown off at CES used the tracker as a virtual camera that allowed players to hold and snap photos of in-game scenes, all within a virtual reality experience. The company's planning to give away 1000 trackers to developers to encourage the growth of its ecosystem.

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Meanwhile, the Vive Deluxe Audio Strap is meant to improve the quality of 360-degree audio consumption by making it more comfortable and practical to use.

Originally unveiled back in November as an exclusive to HTC's Chinese storefront, the TPCast is created to address one of the biggest problems - next to price - facing room-scale virtual reality: the cable tethering your skull to your PC.

It's interesting to see HTC stick with the Vive's current design, rather than releasing a new device.

There's no official pricing just yet, but HTC say they will be shipping later in 2017. It showed off a gadget called the TPCast for this goal which boasts of a 2ms latency and 1.5 hour battery. HTC's goal is to expand that video arcade experience to about 5,000 different arcades worldwide by the end of the year.

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