Now that the Android version of the Oculus Rift is available for preorder, Sony is launching its own VR gaming platform to compete with Oculus.
Called Vroid Studio, the device will ship to developers and consumers this week for $5 a piece.
It will be available to developers in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, and China.
This will be the first time a virtual reality platform has been available for consumers in the US, as it is an exclusive to Oculus.
Sony says that the company has a “very strong partnership” with Oculus, as the developer platform provides “an exciting platform for VR developers.”
For more, check out Polygon’s hands-on preview.
The announcement came from Oculus’ head of VR content, Michael Abrash.
Abracash told Polygon that Sony’s Vroid studio will allow VR developers to create “an immersive experience” for consumers.
The platform will have a “premium VR headset, built from the ground up with VR features,” he added.
“With VR, you can experience everything from the comfort of your home, to the thrill of riding a roller coaster, to watching a thrilling film, to exploring the most exotic locations on Earth.”
Sony’s Void Studio will cost $499, which is a lot cheaper than the Rift’s $599 price tag.
It’s also cheaper than Oculus Rift’s current version, the $599 Rift CV1, which has a built-in motion controllers.
But Sony’s VR platform will likely be more affordable than a competitor like Oculus, which requires developers to develop for multiple platforms.
“The market has to become more global, more global VR, VR games, VR apps,” Abrashefsays.
“That’s where Vroid Studios comes in.”
Sony has also added support for Google Cardboard, which allows developers to make VR games that use a cardboard viewer instead of a traditional headset.
Cardboard headsets are available for sale on Amazon and at some other retailers, but they don’t have the ability to project a full 360-degree field of view.
Sony is promising to support VR “with full stereoscopic 3D,” and the company is currently working with Google on a Cardboard SDK.”VR is a powerful technology, but its capabilities are limited by the way we use it,” ABrash says.
“So we need to get VR games and experiences into the hands of the widest audience possible, and that includes developers, consumers, and consumers of VR.
The next step for VR is making it accessible to more consumers, making VR a standard feature of our lives.”