Wednesday, 16 March 2016 10:43

Playstation VR headset: $549.95 in Australia from October 2016

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With over 240 developers and publishers on board Sony’s long-awaited Playstation VR headset train, Australians can buy in from October at EB Games, JB Hi-Fi, Target and Big W.

At the Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco, Sony has finally announced when and where its VR headset would be available, and at what price.

The pre-order window is now open, with announced retailers the places to go to for more information.

With over 160 ‘diverse titles’ in development for Sony’s Playstation VR (PS VR) headset, which is designed for Sony’s current PS4 platform, October 2016 is the month the PS VR launches globally in Japan, North America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand for AUD $549.95.

Andrew House, President and Global CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc said: “Ever since we unveiled PS VR during the 2014 Game Developers Conference, we’ve received a tremendous response from gamers and developers alike.

“To make sure that we are able to prepare and deliver enough units of PS VR and a wide variety of software titles to consumers worldwide, we have decided to launch PS VR in October 2016. For those who are looking forward to its launch, we would like to thank everyone for their patience and continued support. We are beyond excited to deliver to consumers the amazing experience that PS VR offers.”

Michael Ephraim, MD Sony Computer Entertainment Australia and New Zealand said: “Innovation is in our DNA at PlayStation and PS VR is the single biggest step change in technology I’ve seen in over 20 years at PlayStation.

“There’s a huge amount of excitement around VR in Australia and I am really pleased that we are in a position to share this news with our fans.”

Companies such as 2K Games and Ubisoft are amongst the 230 devs and publishers working on PS VR titles, from smaller independent teams to those zΩlarger studios.

Sony said that software titles in development for PS VR from these developers and publishers as well as from SCE Worldwide Studios (SCE WWS) are now totalling to more than 160 titles (as of today), and over 50 of those titles including Eagle Flight (Ubisoft), EVE: Valkyrie (CCP Games), Headmaster (Frame Interactive), Rez Infinite (Enhance Games), Wayward Sky (Uber Entertainment), RIGS: Mechanized Combat League, Tumble VR, Until Dawn: Rush of Blood and PlayStation®VR WORLDS (SCE WWS) are expected to launch by the end of this year.

Additionally, Sony said DICE and Lucasfilm are working on an all-new Star Wars Battlefront (Electronic Arts Inc.) gaming experience only for PS VR. Furthermore, THE PLAYROOM VR by SCE WWS will be available as a free download from PlayStation®Store to all PS VR owners, simultaneously with the launch of the system.

To further drive the expansion of the PS VR software line-up, SCE is partnering with Tools & Middleware companies to provide innovative technology solutions and enhance the title development environment for PS VR.

Sony said the system also has a Cinematic mode, which lets users enjoy a variety of content in a large virtual screen while wearing the headset.

On the virtual screen, Sony advised: "Users can enjoy content on a virtual screen up to 225 inches (5 meters in width) at a distance of 2.5 meters. The size of the screen will feel different depending on individual users.”

Supported content for the Cinematic mode includes standard PS4 games and videos as well as variety of PS4 features including Share Play and Live from PlayStation. Users will also be able to enjoy 360 degrees photos and videos that are captured by devices such as omnidirectional cameras on PS VR via PS4 Media Player, which will let them feel as if they are physically inside the captured scene.

As you might have expected, Sony said it would ‘continue to vigorously promote PS VR towards its release in October 2016 by showcasing PS VR titles at events around the globe, while also broadening its title portfolio.’

When it comes to the VR experience, Sony advises the following: “Users can enjoy content on a virtual screen up to 225 inches (5 meters in width) at a distance of 2.5 meters. The size of the screen will feel different depending on individual users.”

Specs below, please read on:

Here are the specs:

PlayStationVR, CUH-ZVR1series
Released: October 2016 for $549 AUD, 44,980 yen, $399 USD, £349 GBP and €399 EUR

External dimensions
VR headset: Approx. 187×185×277 mm (width : Approx. 187×185, excludes largest projection, headband at the shortest)
Processor unit: Approx. 143×36×143 mm (width or unit: Approx. , excludes largest projection)

Mass
VR headset: Approx. 610g (excluding cable)
Processor unit: Approx. 365g

Display Method
OLED

Panel Size
5.7 inches

Panel Resolution
1920×RGB×1080 (960×RGB×1080)

Refresh rate
120Hz, 90Hz

Field of View
Approximately 100 degrees

Sensors
Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer)

Connection interface
VR headset: HDMI, AUX, Stereo Headphone Jack
Processor unit: HDMI TV, HDMI PS4, USB, HDMI, AUX

Processor Unit Function
3D audio processing, Social Screen (mirroring mode, separate mode), Cinematic mode

Included
VR headset × 1
Processor unit × 1
VR headset connection cable × 1
HDMI cable × 1
USB cable × 1
Stereo headphones × 1 (with a complete set of earpiece)
AC power cord × 1
AC adaptor × 1


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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