Friday February 24, 2017

HTC Viveport Subscription Service is Coming Soon and the First Month is Free

HTC's Viveport subscription service is rolling out in the coming weeks for Vive owners. As an added bonus, HTC has decided to make the first month free! This will allows everyone to try it out and see if it's for them. When a user subscribes to an app, they effectively check it out from the library. The Viveport license allows for a handful of apps to be checked out at one time. When customers want a new app, they have to return the license for a rented app to the library first. This means that you can only have a few apps out at a time. Good thing that there is a free trial as this might not be the best solution for Australians and others with metered internet access.

The profit split seems generous at 60% for developers and 40% for HTC. It is not known how the 60% will be divided up among the developers. Pricing for the service is expected to be announced at the upcoming 2017 Game Developers Conference and Mobile World Congress. I think it could be a great promotional tool to get the word out about a new game as a developer could feature it on the service for a limited time period for example. Or maybe a VR game has been out for a year and the developer is trying to squeeze every dollar out of it's software so they place it on the service. Of course all of this will depend upon the pricing of the service as overcharging will keep people away.

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Depending on the final price of the service this could be a great way to get more people engaging with more VR content, and add an extra source of revenue for developers. Last week Vive co-creator Valve said that only 30 of 1,300 VR apps on Steam had made over $250,000, so it’s important to developers to seek other means of income for their apps beyond a single digital storefront. To that end, they might also look to HTC’s Viveport Arcade plan, which offers a similar approach to granting access to apps for location-based VR.