Skip to main content

HTC's Next VR Headset Could Be For Phones

With the HTC Vive, HTC has planted its flag as one of the top makers of virtual reality headsets. Now it may be working on a new VR product that works with mobile  devices.

HTC has plans to offer a virtual reality product to complement its upcoming flagship phone, the U Ultra, CNET reports after speaking with the company's president of global sales Chia-lin Chang. According to Chang, the HTC device won't be like Google's Daydream View or the Samsung Gear VR — headsets in which users plug in their phones to view virtual content.

"Vive is very top end, and in the coming months you'll see our plans in terms of mobility and VR, and it's not a phone slapped onto a headset," Chang told CNET. "It'd be a different thing."

MORE: Best VR Headsets

While details are scant for now, it's clear that HTC has high hopes for virtual reality. In recent years, the company has watched its smartphone market share fall, forcing it to focus its efforts elsewhere. In its most recent quarter, HTC reported a loss of $116.8 million. Revenue slide by 13 percent to $720.7 million.

An emphasis on virtual reality is a big part of the company's turnaround efforts. But the VR market is still in its fledgling stages and low-cost alternatives like Google Cardboard, Samsung Gear VR, and the like are stealing market share. With a high-end VR headset already available, HTC seems primed to try to steal market share at the lower end of the market. Exactly how it will do that, however, remains to be seen.

Chang, who told CNET that HTC is "a VR company," said that he expects the virtual reality device to be available by the end of the year.