After a long time coming, considering the leaked images and rumors, but on a Friday night, Valve has surprise launched a teaser site featuring a brand-new virtual reality headset, called the Valve Index. The teaser shows off this image of the Index, with the tagline “Upgrade your experience” and a May 2019 date. They launched it through livestream on a page dedicated to the Index , Valve’s PC games distribution platform. It appears to be a device of its own making and not one in partnership with its longtime VR partner HTC.
There isn’t much information about device as of now, since no details on price, technical specifications, or its functionality have been given. That said, there’s actually a lot we can see in that image, and a lot we can piece together from previous Valve leaks.
After looking at official teaser image we can judge, it’ll have at least two built-in sensors (or cameras) on the headset itself, and what appears to be IPD and viewing distance adjustment notches. It will have four prominent wide-angle cameras, strongly suggesting that, like the Oculus Quest and other second-gen VR headsets, it will have inside-out tracking to allow players to move around a room without worrying about placing base stations or external tracking cameras.
The new Index comes with adjustment slider, presumably for IPD (interpupillary distance) so it can easily accommodate people whose eyes are set closer together or further apart than average. It’s a fairly common feature, but missing in the new Oculus Rift S. Though Oculus says you can set your IPD in the software settings of the Rift S.
Powered with Snapdragon 835 in $400 USD
Valve earlier partnered with HTC for the development of Vive and integrating it into the Steam ecosystem. Valve Index isn’t the only headset coming to VR gaming this year; Oculus announced release of two new headsets during Spring 2019. The Oculus Rift S will be an upgraded version of the previous Rift that’ll feature built-in tracking sensors, a higher resolution, and a more ergonomic head strap. Another one Oculus Quest, a standalone VR headset powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. Both Oculus headsets will come with the cost of $400 USD.