Virtual reality can be used for much more than some interesting gaming experiments, and HTC wants users in “business and commercial environments” to be able to take advantage of its Vive VR hardware. Thus, the company announced its new Vive Business Edition (Vive BE), a full Vive system being sold for the low, low price of $1,200—or 50 percent more than the $800 consumer Vive.
Despite the increased cost, there doesn’t seem to be anything different about the physical hardware you get with the Vive BE. The “business” system still comes with a headset, two controllers, two base stations, and all the necessary cables and face cushions you could need. All that extra money will instead help pay for a 12-month limited warranty and a “dedicated Vive Business Edition customer support line” (as well as “commercial licensing,” if that’s something your lawyer says you need for some reason).
That support line might be useful when one of your employees can’t figure out how to plug the headphones into the little dongle on top of the headset, we suppose. Still, the $400 markup is a pretty dear price to pay for support on a system that’s already pretty user-friendly. The “limited warranty” doesn’t even cover things like “physical damage,” “rough handling,” or “accidents” that might arise from the headset being exposed to the general public in a business setting.