The provision of stable internet is a vital component for the future growth and development of virtual reality (VR), as has been discussed here on VRFocus before. Recognising this, HTC is teaming up with China Mobile to launch the ‘5G Devices Forerunner Initiative’.
The initiative aims to conduct large scale tests of pre-commercial 5G devices, which will aid in the development of new VR applications, such as ones for HTC’s stand-alone VR device, the HTC Vive Focus.
5G is set for a full roll-out in 2020, and the partners involved in the project are hoping that it will lead to the discovery of capability limits and the discovery of new areas for VR and 5G development.
HTC Chairperson Cher Wang said: “With the coming advancements in next-generation mobile technologies, the proliferation of 5G networks will facilitate new classes of use cases for VR/AR not possible in the past, leading to more rapid mass adoption and more natural interaction models for immersive technologies.”
The development of new applications and services for 5G as well as new VR apps will no doubt eventually make their way into other territories, providing benefits for many other areas as 5G begins to roll out.
China Mobile will also be helping HTC boost its sales figures in China. Since China Mobile is the largest of the three main Chinese carriers, this places them in an idea position to promote sales of HTC devices such as the HTC Vive Focus, as well as its smartphone handsets.
The HTC Vive Focus is not currently available outside of China, but HTC have indicated its intention to bring the device to other areas some time later in 2018, though an exact time frame has not been set. Developer kits for the device are already being made available, however.
For future news on the HTC Vive Focus and other new VR hardware and software, keep checking back with VRFocus.