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Don't want to buy VR apps? Rent them instead via Vive

HTC is marking the one-year anniversary of its Vive VR headset with a one-day sale, plus the launch of a subscription app service.


Vive doesn't get permanent price drop, but it will offer an app subscription service.

Sarah Tew/CNET

One year of home holodecks is almost on the books, and HTC is marking the date with a sale.

HTC Vive is the most expensive VR hardware on the market and hasn't formally dropped in price since its launch a year ago -- unlike the Oculus Rift. However, HTC is dropping Vive's price by $100 to $699 on Wednesday only. The price drop mirrors the sale from last year's Black Friday. Perhaps at some point, the Vive will stay at $699 permanently. Not yet.

The bigger news is that the Vive is launching a subscription software service via its HTC app hub Viveport, offering a rotating selection of apps for $6.99 a month. Up to five apps can be kept at once via the service, but a limited supply of apps will be available to choose from. Vive owners get a one-month free trial to the service starting Wednesday.

HTC is also giving away a free game compilation, Arcade Saga, starting -- yep -- Wednesday. The game debuted last year on Steam and Viveport. Oculus has been giving away several games to Rift owners, most recently Robo Recall.

A subscription plan for VR software seems like a good call since most apps are better to try than buy. But keep in mind that Viveport isn't the same hub as Steam, which isn't offering a subscription service yet.