HTC Vive Focus 3 update could free arcades from VR backpacks

With a new feature called Location Based Entertainment, or LBE Mode, the Vive Focus 3 — a $1,300 non-consumer-focused wireless headset — has added an innovative new capability. The tracking distance of the headset is greatly increased with LBE Mode.

The Focus 3’s pairing of six Degrees of Freedom (6DOF) and inside-out tracking, as well as its added features, allow it to better support group VR sessions at immersive free-roam arcade spaces like Zero Latency or The Void. HTC has also incorporated a few more options.

The original HTC Vive, for example, required the user to connect it with a wearable computer such as a backpack. That has several drawbacks: it takes time to prepare people in the backpacks, the backpack strap systems may not fit everyone well, and they make the experience less pleasant for everyone.

Fully self-contained headsets with tracking cameras and processing power built in can alter that. However, they’ve only been available for a few years, and the most advanced one, the Facebook/Meta Oculus Quest, is designed primarily for at-home usage.