HTC Launches VivePort: A New VR Appstore
HTC Vive has announced that they are launching, VivePort. An alternative platform for accessing virtual reality content. The platform, announced at VRLA, 2016, will be available, globally, this autumn, having been released in China earlier in the year.
The move will add additional categories for users to choose from, in a bid to diversify the content range for this leading virtual reality company. Some of the new categories include information, edutainment, social media, 360˚ video, news, sports, health, travel, and shopping.
With that said, it also seems that Vive are trying to create a distinction between the products found on Steam, and the experiences found on VivePort. According to the press release, “VivePort builds on the successful offering of VR games readily available on Steam.”
One of the goals put forward by Vive is to create a close relationship with developers and expand on the idea of a global VR community. According to the company “its success will be deeply tied to the success of developers listing content on the platform. ” In addition to this, they have also revealed that a beta will be available “in a few weeks,” and will be open to all of those invested in making “quality” content for VR.
Although Vive is making a distinction between the two platforms, they are still encouraging “creators to build the best VR apps and distribute them across all relevant platforms.
“VivePort will play an important role in giving access to virtual reality experiences that will enhance our daily lives and the way we connect with friends and family,” said Rikard Steiber, Senior Vice President of VivePort at HTC.
A new update for Vive Home will also be coming along with the VivePort. An update that will add a customizable space for the user to inhabit. Something that will be a great feature to add, especially if they allow the ability to bring friends into the space. According to Vive, VivePort will be available “in the headset, as a PC and mobile app, and on the web.
The reasoning supporting this new venture may be to draw a line in the sand and create a clean slate to deliver content for this new medium. Established in 2002 and launched in 2003, Steam has had a long time to accumulate a good trove of content. This is something that could detract the users gaze when seeking to discover what is currently available on the market, so it would make sense that the Vive would want to expand their platform in this way.