HTC has made an incredible product in its partnership with Valve. The Vive has so many capabilities and has come along way from the day it was announced almost one year ago. Today at MWC, HTC brought us closer than we’ve been before to a full out launch. We now know how much the Vive will cost and when it will arrive, but there’s a new feature called Vive Phone Services that we are eager to try out.
HTC released an Android app called Vive Phone Companion.
What is Vive Phone Services?
In HTC’s press release the new feature is said to help create a bridge between the two realities so one can remain immersed in one while communicating in the other. With Vive Phone Services your phone will connect to your headset enabling you to answer incoming calls or return missed calls, read new text messages and reply to them with quick responses, plus check upcoming calendar invites.
Which phones will this service work with?
Surely, many of you are thinking that this is gimmicky and will only work with HTC phones since this is HTC hardware. Or maybe you’re thinking this is limited to Android phones since the platform has so many capabilities and isn’t restricted by third parties like other mobile OS’s.
Well folks, Vive Phone Services will work across Android and iOS platforms. Passing calls, texts, and calendar notices to your HTC Vive Head Mounted Display via a Bluetooth connection.
Who will use this type of service?
HTC says this creates more possibilities for businesses and personal use and we can certainly see both avenues making good use of the new feature.
In the business world, it is important to be reachable via smartphone and there a few resources out there like Envelop VR that allow you to work in a virtual office; having multiple screens to for the ultimate productivity workstation.
For personal use, VPS allows us to stay connected to our friends and loved ones from within our favorite VR experiences.
These are just two very basic examples of who this service will work for, but we’re sure HTC is encouraging its partners to let their creativity go wild with this new feature and provide additional best practices between our phones and the Vive.
We’re willing to bet Team Zuckerburg is kicking themselves for not working with their Oculus crew to enable this type of feature on the upcoming PC-based VR system called Rift. When reading HTC’s press release, this service sounded a heck of a lot useful in the social media arena. Receiving call and text messages during a virtual reality session is pretty useful, but what about the discussions taking place over social media. After all, this would be the perfect type of injection Facebook could have on their investment in Oculus. This could be something Facebook and Oculus were already working on, but just like controllers in VR, HTC has beat them to the punch.
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