One of the biggest barriers to adoption of virtual reality is getting people to experience the technology for themselves. HTC, maker of the Vive VR headset, is addressing that problem by bringing its newly launched head-mounted display to retail, so anyone can try it out.
HTC is partnering with Microsoft and GameStop in the U.S. and Canada to bring Vive demos to retail. It's starting out small; the first retail locations to get Vive demo units will be the Microsoft flagship store in New York, Microsoft at Bellevue Square in Washington, Microsoft at City Creek Center in Utah and Microsoft at Park Meadows Mall in Colorado.
Up to 30 Microsoft stores will get Vive demo units this year. Approximately 10 GameStop stores are also getting Vive demo units this month. The hardware will be demonstrated with "select experiences from the more than 120 titles that are available now on Steam."
HTC said it will also sell the Vive headset at retail stores this summer. Pre-orders at those retail locations are expected to be fulfilled by June.
Vive is currently in stock online through HTC's official web store. The headset costs $799.
For our own thoughts on the HTC Vive, which was developed in partnership with Valve, read Polygon's review.