Sony officially drops PlayStation VR headset pricing

Sony announced on 30 March 2018 that it is permanently dropping the price of the PlayStation VR (PSVR) headset to encourage adoption among PS4 owners, and is now in direct competition with Microsoft’s Mixed Reality headsets from their partners. Sony said the official price is now $299, and that’s great value for some of the bundled options like DOOM VR and Gran Turismo Sport. Microsoft’s Mixed Reality headsets from their partners like HP, Dell, and Acer are already in the $220-$250 range, so this is likely the very lowest that Sony can go. Could this be clearing out inventory for a new version of the headset for 2018?

According to Sony’s last announcement on the sales of the PlayStation VR (PSVR) platform, one in 35 PS4 owners has a PSVR headset. That’s staggering numbers for a VR platform, and far ahead of others – Oculus Rift owners account for all of 0.20% of steam users, followed by the HTC Vive at 0.18%. Sony’s numbers come in at 2.8% for their platform, which makes it the most successful VR platform in terms of user adoption (Google Cardboard/VR notwithstanding), and with around 80 million PS4 owners worldwide means that approximately 2.24 million people own a PSVR headset connected to a PlayStation console.

The PSVR is an attractive platform that serves as an alternative to the Rift and the Vive, thanks to a project called Trinus that created drivers for the PSVR to make it work as a standard headset with the Steam VR platform. The official price drop makes the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive the more expensive option by far, with the Rift+Touch sitting at $399 and the Vive at $489. The Vive Pro is even more expensive at $799.

PlayStation VR Oculus Rift Windows Mixed Reality (reference)
Display technology OLED LCD 90-120Hz OLED Pentile 90Hz OLED LCD 60-90Hz
Display size 5.7-inch with 100º FOV 7.0-inch with 110º FOV  5.7-inch with 95º FOV
Resolution per eye 960 x 1080 1080 x 1200 1440 x 1440
Input LED positional tracking with PS Camera, accelerometer, gyrometer, six-axis degree of freedom Infrared positional tracking with IR sensor, six-axis, six-axis degree of freedom Accelerometer, gyrometer, infrared controller tracking, object-based camera tracking, six-axis degree of freedom
Controller Dualshock 4, PlayStation Aim, PlayStation Move Xbox One controller, Oculus Touch controllers, keyboard and mouse, joystick, steering wheel, etc. Xbox One controller, Mixed Reality controllers, keyboard and mouse, joystick, steering wheel, etc.
Controllers bundled No Yes Yes
Weight 610g 470g 350g
RRP $299 $399 $299

Sony’s PlayStation VR has more than 175 VR titles through the PlayStation Store, and works with existing Move controllers and the older PlayStation Camera. Two versions currently exist – the discontinued V1 model, and the V2 model with the product code CUH-ZVR2, which uses a single cable to connect to the breakout box, is reportedly more comfortable to wear, includes a headphone jack, and supports HDR in supported titles.

Sony is expected to announce a wireless version of the headset at some point, although the technical difficulties in getting this to work will prevent Sony from being able to deliver a wireless version this year.

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