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My dream headset from HTC - the HTC Flow Plus


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I have a Vive Pro 2, I've owned a Valve Index and a Quest 2. 

I know what I want in the way of another headset and I'm hoping HTC delivers something amazing. Here is what I want in a future SteamVR compatible headset, in order of importance:

  • Light weight like the HTC Flow (This really seems like the place all VR headsets must go, I would have bought a Vive Flow if it worked with SteamVR)
  • Built in Lighthouse tracking so it works with the existing light house tracking system
  • Micro OLED screens like the Apara, similar resolution to the Vive Pro 2
  • Prescription lens attachment points, with 3D models of lens adapters available so 3rd party opticians can make lenses for it - I'm outside the diopter  adjustment range for the HTC Flow and use prescription lens adapters in my Vive Pro 2 and they work great - I believe a wider range of users can be supported with 3rd party optician support. This is why I didn't buy the Apara. 
  • Ability to hook up to Displayport over USB-C to any phone or computer, to use with devices that are not powerful enough for VR - but allows for use as a virtual desktop or virtual movie screen (like the Apara). This requires inside out tracking, which the HTC Flow must have?
  • Use the same microphone setup from the Valve Index, it's documented on their website, the microphone in the Vive Pro 2 doesn't sound nearly as good as the Valve Index, and this is a major complaint of VR Chat users 
  • If possible non-fresnel lenses, it's a pain point that the older Vive Pro headset could have other potentially better lenses fitted to it, but not the Vive Pro 2. The lenses are so critical and this is one reason why the HTC Vive Pro 2 looses out to the Valve Index amongst my friends, the HTC Vive Pro 2 got a smaller sweet spot then the Valve Index. 
  • USB adapter on front for additional cameras and accessories
  • Make it more breathable than the Vive Pro 2, some of friends can't use my Vive Pro 2 because it fogs up so quickly. 

My primary use case is VRChat and 3d sculpting and creative programs, but the weight of the HTC Vive Pro 2 causes me to have pain in my neck. 

I'd like to be able to use this headset for:

  • VRChat & creative programs
  • Virtual desktop for programming, I wanna be able to hook this to my work Macbook Pro, or my personal Linux programming laptop, it should work like a monitor no drivers required, which might mean it needs inside out tracking or cameras for it and do it natively on the device. It means it needs to be able to be powered from the device, much like a portable USB-C powered monitor. Imagine a huge virtual monitor in VR, like a 38" wide screen virtual monitor, but to make this work it needs inside out tracking which works automatically.
  • On an air plane or for travel so I can have a huge virtual screen - this is why I want DisplayPort over USB-C I want to hook it up to my work laptop so I can have better ergonomics when working remotely, VR allows for you to keep your head looking at eye level when working remotely - and is a huge ergonomics win, IF the headset is light and non obtrusive. Miracast is nice but not widely supported so it's a nice to have. 

What I'm asking for is an HTC Flow Plus or something. I want something the form factor and weight of the HTC Flow, but that works with Steam VR, with upgradable head straps so you could make it useful for hard core gaming, but it's like a portable monitor as well, and something you want to carry everywhere with you. - aka HTC Flow Plus or what ever. 

The HTC Flow was so close to being a major game changer, and HTC missed the mark. I'm rooting for HTC to be in this fight, but they have to deliver amazing products.

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Vive Focus 3VIVE Business Streaming USB Cable

Not exact, but the Vive Focus 3 might get you closer to what you are hoping. The streaming cable is currently sold out, but Vive Focus 3 also has streaming with WiFi 5 or WiFi 6.

Thanks to @michela for mentioning this cable exists in another discussion.

VIVE Business Streaming USB Cable.png

Edited by halu
Not exact, but closer
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Kind of, it's not light weight and as far as I know the screens are the same as in the Vive Pro 2, not the 5K OLED screens in the Apara

The Apara 5K is the closes thing that exist to what I want,  but I would rather have it made by HTC for support reasons. The thing the Vive Focus 3 is missing is light weight and it doesn't have 5K screens.

This is why I'm asking for an Arpara / Vive Flow hybrid device. 

Also I want to add two more items to my bucket list:

* Pass through button, so you can push a tactile button on the outside of the headset and immediately see through the front facing cameras on the headset. I use prescription lens adapters, and I'm really pretty blind, if I could use the VR headset as a quick pass through device then I wouldn't need to get my glasses each time I want to see something in my room. I could simply push the pass through button see my surroundings and pickup what ever I need, or interact with the computer in the same way.  The Quest 2 has this type of feature. 



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Actually I'll add to my prior statement, I want a set of tactile buttons on the side of the headset which can be reassigned for different purposes, the goal is to add some quick default functionality the user can access without removing the headset. 

By default I'd map them to:

  • Quick camera pass through (Using existing steamvr functionality)
  • Speech to text button, which simply passes the captured text to the system as if it was a keyboard, HTC should use one of the existing speech recognition models like Mozilla Common Voice 
  • View/Un-view the desktop (Using existing steamvr functionality)
Edited by Celer
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  • 2 weeks later...

Vive Flow is awesome.  I use it quite a lot.  But the thing is really best for seated games.  Or else it would need a better strap to keep it on your head. 

The main thing it needs is a displayport connection to play SteamVR games (seated).  Wireless works ok but imagine quality isn't very good.

So they need either display port or better wireless streaming on the next Vive Flow. 

It already has a tactile button for passthrough, btw.  The passthrough is really basic though. 

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  • 7 months later...

Wow I think HTC nailed it with the Vive XR Elite, I'm super excited about this head set and have ordered one! Excellent job HTC!

I have some requests for HTC:

  • Make a lighthouse tracking attachment for the headset so it can be used with base stations for those of us who have already invested in the rest of the lighthouse tracking system. 
  • Please produce content aimed at developers for using the XR system - I have enterprise use cases I'd like to explore, but it's got to be easy to build apps for your stuff.  I really believe headsets like this one set the stage for a new VR/XR app platform for creative / enterprise apps.
  • Figure out hand tracking so you can use this in a hybrid desk environment with keyboard and mouse. I as a developer want to be able to seamlessly move back and forth between 3D interactions with my hands and the keyboard and mouse.
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  • 5 months later...

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