Oculus Rift founder sorry for misleading consumers to ‘$350 ballpark’ price

January 8
9:43 PM 2016

Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckery apologized for the "$350 ballpark" figure he announced in September that mislead consumers' expectations.

Game Spot reported that Luckery published a written apology in Reddit, saying that he knew internally that Oculus Rift was priced at almost $600 as he announced in September that it was priced at only $350. He announced that price to counter a false report saying that the device would be at $1,500.

"Earlier last year, we started officially messaging that the Rift recommended-spec PC would together cost roughly $1,500. Many outlets picked the story up as 'Rift will cost $1,500," said Luckery. "In September interview, during the Oculus Connect developer conference, I made the infamous 'roughly in that $350 ballpark, but it will cost more than that' quote. As an explanation, not an excuse: during that time, many outlets were repeating the 'Rift is $1,500' line, and I was frustrated by how many people thought that was the price of the headset itself."

According to Tech Insider, Facebook's Oculus VR announced Wednesday that its price is $600. A lot of people were not happy with the big difference in price than the previously announced $350; most of them changed their mind into no longer buying the gadget. Luckery tweeted a strong response to this price backlash, saying "To reiterate, we are not making money on Rift hardware. High end VR is expensive, but Rift is obscenely cheap for what it is."

Engadget wrote that another issue is how the earlier DK2 hardware's development kit was priced at $350, which could have reinforced the idea that the Oculus Rift product would cost the same. "An assumption that myself (and Oculus) did not do a good job of fixing. I apologize," said Luckery. 

According to Luckery, the price jump is due to the components packed in the technology, which have been constantly upgraded since its first prototype. He said that they don't make money from the Rift, but argued that people will get more than the $599 they will spend on the device.

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