Oculus is temporarily cutting down the price of Oculus Rift virtual reality headset to match cheaper rivals like the PlayStation VR. Oculus, the company acquired by Facebook Inc. in 2014 for US$3 billion, is taking steps to discover if the price has been the bottleneck for the device to become the bestseller in the bunch.
The Oculus Rift starting Monday is priced at US$399, including the Touch controllers. The price reduction will run for six weeks as Facebook targets to determine whether price had been the major roadblock why its immersive gaming and stories did not take off, Oculus vice president for content Jason Rubin said in a statement.
The virtual reality headset market is still dominated by varying prices, depending on the power of the product. Sony Corp's PlayStation VR is priced at US$399.99 while HTC Corp's Vive costs US$799 on its website. HTC Vive is the most expensive still as it is packed with advanced technologies.
When Facebook acquired the virtual reality headset firm, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said they were expecting for the device to "become a part of daily life for billions of people." The claim has not happened yet which they suspect that the top-of-the-line price is to blame.
While price cuts are usually an indication of a product's poor sales performance, Rubin noted that they were planning to institute discounts since then, but they waited for enough movies, games, and the like to come by so users will make the most out of it. On its website, the company is aiming at students as spring break kicks off.
This is not, however, the first time that Oculus cut down the Oculus Rift's price as it did discount it down to US$598 in March which was US$200 cheaper than the original price.
In the meantime, Facebook and Oculus are still facing the US$500 million lawsuit against video game publisher ZeniMax Media Inc due to copyright violations. The internet firm has asked for a new trial.