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Oculus Rift likely will cost more than $350 when it ships, says Luckey

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'No compromises were made in terms of quality,' says founder.

The Oculus Rift consumers will get in the first three months of 2016 is likely to cost more than the $350 developers spent on their kits, Oculus VR Palmer Luckey said last week during the company's Oculus Connect event.

In an interview with RoadToVR.com, Luckey (pictured) said the unit is "roughly in that ballpark ... but it's going to cost more than that." That's because the consumer unit will have more technology and features behind it than the first and second developer kits did.

"It's just the reality that when you make this thing, you have to decide what tradeoffs you're going to make," Luckey told RoadToVR.com. "Are you going to optimize for absolute lowest price possible, even if it's going to be a lower quality experience?"

In Luckey's view, that answer is no.

"We need to put a stake in the ground and say, 'This is the best possible experience that we were able to make. No compromises were made in terms of quality,'" he explained.

Luckey expands on his answer more at RoadToVR.com, but the gist of it is Oculus seems more worried by the possibility of disappointing new users with skimpy tech than they are by frightening them off with a chunky price tag.

For those on a budget, there's the Gear VR, announced at $99 at Oculus Connect, but the device also requires a Samsung smartphone.

In terms of competitors, the Vive from Valve and HTC has yet to be priced, but it will ship with controllers, which Oculus Rift will not. Those won't arrive until a quarter after the VR's launch.