Valve Index 2: release date, expectations and news
Rumors suggest that a new VR headset from Valve may be set to release later in 2023, the Valve Index 2.
And with the original Valve Index now pushing five years into the market, and starting to feel a little archaic, compared to the fierce competition, in the face of Meta and its Quest 2 and Quest Pro headsets, it’s plausible to expect what Valve wants to revamp and modernize its own VR headset.
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Valve Index 2 release date
In early 2023, Valve remained silent on release date announcements for the Valve Index 2, but fans are starting to speculate that the new headset could be announced and released this year. 2019, and with its specs now falling behind more affordable options like the Quest 2, and more importantly, with the Meta Quest 3 now on the horizon, Valve will probably also want to release a competitor later this year.
Stay tuned for any updates as soon as any official news or leaks give us a glimpse of a potential Valve Index 2 release date.
Valve Index Price 2
The Valve Index has never been the most affordable VR headset, coming in at $999 for the full VR kit, and we’re currently guessing the Valve Index 2 boasts the same price tag.
While Valve may discontinue using some now archaic accessories, namely base stations, which could theoretically make the headset cheaper, market trends may actually necessitate a potential price increase.
The Meta Quest 3, for example, which is also due out later this year, is said to have a price increase over its predecessor of at least $100.
With that in mind, whether Valve will also raise the price of its next headset, or instead aim to make it cheaper, so it can compete with the Quest 3’s “around $500” price tag is anyone’s guess right now. moment.
Another theory is that Valve might be releasing two headsets, a high-end Valve Index 2 and a cheaper low-end variant, but we should take the rumor with a grain of salt.
Valve index 2 design
Image of a Valve patent application document, potentially showing a Valve Index 2
We’re not expecting any major redesigns for the Valve Index 2, speculating that the company behind Steam and Half-Life will stick to its sleek, dark look, and specifically the stiff, intricate face strap.
The face strap in particular might remain exactly the same as on the first Valve Index, at least judging by the image above, which was taken from a recent Valve patent application file.
What we’d like to see is a more ergonomic and compact head strap, something closer to Quest 2’s, but whether or not Valve is simpler is still up for speculation, as all the official details on the Valve Index 2’s design and head strap are yet to be revealed.
Valve Index Tracking 2
While doing our recent Comparing Meta Quest 2 vs Valve Index, we concluded that the Index’s tracking method is starting to feel quite archaic in 2023, requiring plugged-in base station devices, which on top of adding to the mess of cables that l ‘user has to manage, even make a high-pitched moaning noise.
In contrast, the Meta Quest 2 and its next successor, the Quest 3, don’t require any special tracking hardware and can work perfectly just by using their built-in cameras.
So it was speculated that the Valve Index 2 would be a big step up from the original, eventually ditching base stations and relying on its cameras for tracking. Note that these are still just rumors and speculation, but plausible nonetheless. If Valve doesn’t want to move away from using base stations, its new VR headset would just lag behind the competition in terms of ease of use and general convenience.
Display of valve index 2, IPD, FOV
We hope the Valve Index 2 will be a big step up from the original, as using the Valve Index after the Quest 2 for our recent comparison of the two clearly showed just how far Meta’s headsets have come. advance. Index has an LCD screen with a resolution of 1440 by 1600 pixels per eye, and it’s just not sharp enough these days, with visible pixels and a screen door effect.
Valve would likely want to match or surpass the Quest 2’s “near 4K” screen, which offers 1832 x 1920 pixels per eye. Maybe also switch to mini-LED technology on LCD, which would improve both the sharpness and the colors of the VR headset.
Also, although the first Valve Index has a fantastic FOV of up to 130 degrees, well beyond most competitors, Valve might try to go even higher with the second Index iteration.
In any case, we’ll have the official details here as soon as they come out.
Valve Index 2 Controllers
A first-generation Valve Index controller (left) next to a Meta Quest 2 controller (right)
While the original Valve Index controllers are chunky and with complex, arguably unnecessary, straps compared to the competition, we’re hoping Valve will simplify them in design, to be akin to the Quest 2 or HTC Vive.
Something we’re excited to bring back is the controllers’ rechargeability, meaning the fact that they should have built-in batteries, instead of relying on replaceable ones.
Valve Index 2 Features and Software
With the Quest 2 shaking things up in the VR headset market, speculation is brewing that the Valve Index 2 will also have the ability to run standalone and wirelessly. It’s important to note that these are unconfirmed and should be taken with a grain of salt, but the theory would make sense. If Valve were to make the Valve Index 2 capable of wireless operation, and let’s face it, the first Index relies on far too many wires, the headset will need more complex technology inside. A built-in battery, storage and its own operating system, among others.
The Quest 2’s operating system is based on Android, which is also the most plausible option Valve could choose, should the company decide to make its next headset similarly standalone, and with an option for content PC VR is streamed directly wirelessly.
Will the Valve Index 2 be autonomous and wireless?
As mentioned above, there is speculation that Valve could make the Valve Index 2 standalone, like the Meta Quest 2, which would also give it the ability to run wirelessly whether that’s when running games Android-based VR or PC VR games streamed from a computer over the Internet.
However, this is just speculation, and while it seems plausible, and we really hope it’s true, Valve has yet to confirm or deny it, so stay tuned for official info as soon as we get it. will have.
Will the Valve Index 2 use base stations for tracking?
The first-generation Valve Index has a complicated setup, requiring at least two base station devices for head tracking
Another theory is that the Valve Index 2 will remove the requirement to set up and plug in base station devices, which are used for head tracking with the original Valve Index, HTC Vive and some other older headsets. old.
The Quest 2 has set a new precedent in the world of VR headsets, where a simple setup, with tracking that “just works” without any extra gimmicks, should be possible, so it’s plausible to expect Valve to want match that, instead of letting its new helmet look archaic compared to the competition.
Should we wait for Valve Index 2?
Although it is always on our best VR headset list, and for good reason, the original Valve Index is now pushing five years on the market and starting to feel a bit outdated spec-wise, compared to cheaper options like the Quest 2.
With that in mind, it’s definitely worth considering waiting for the Valve Index 2, instead of buying a first-gen Valve Index in 2023.
You should definitely consider waiting for the Valve Index 2, which we believe will be a step ahead of its predecessor, in terms of specs, features, and overall simplicity.