As if there weren’t enough virtual headsets out there, the game maker Valve is throwing a hat into the ring.
Valve is known for making hit shooting games like Half-Life and Portal, and the battle strategy game Dota 2. It runs the popular Steam online game store. It’s pioneered new virtual reality technology.
Now Valve appears to be building a headset too.
The Bellevue, Washington, game maker quietly said it’s going to start preorders for its own VR headset, called Valve Index, on May 1. Valve said the new device will be sold alongside the company’s newthat allow for better control of VR games and apps.
The new device headset is due ship on June 15, though that date could change. The company hasn’t revealed the headset’s price yet either.
“More info will be made available in the coming weeks,” a Valve spokesman said. The company’s planning a bigger announcement around when preorders begin.
Word of Valve’s new headset may come as a surprise. Until now, it appeared the company was focused on helping its partner HTC build headsets. Valve is also known for incubating technology like that help power HTC’s headsets. Valve has also created prototypes like the , which were first shown a couple years ago.
When Valve does start selling VR headsets, it won’t be competing with just the likes of HTC. Facebook’s Oculus VR division and its upcoming would likely compete against Valve’s Index for displaying intricately detailed and complex video games and VR worlds. Valve would also be going up against Sony and its , which is powered by a separately sold PlayStation 4 video game console.
Originally published March 29, 8:16 p.m. PT.
Update, March 30: Adds Valve comment; Update, April 1, 1:39 p.m. PT: Adds more details about launch date; Update, April 1, 2:06 p.m.: Adds details on preorders and launch.