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If You Pre-Ordered the Oculus Rift, Get Ready to Wait a Few More Months

The future of VR is now in a few months or so.

oculus rift

The future will have to wait a little longer to arrive, because Oculus Rift pre-orders have suffered months-long delays. Even early adopters who placed orders for the virtual reality headset as soon as possible may have to practice the art of patience. The Verge reports that an “unexpected component shortage” has pushed back the shipping dates for many pre-orders; although the first headsets shipped in late March, several customers have received email notifications that their packages won’t arrive until May or June.

One of the Rift’s competitors, the HTC Vive, also experienced some shipping delays due to “order processing issues,” according to the HTC company blog. They claim that all of those issues have since been sorted out now, and “Vive order fulfillment is on track without delays.”

The fact that the HTC Vive got back on schedule, while the Oculus Rift lags behind, has led to some conspiracy theorizing in the Oculus sub-reddit. One user speculated that HTC could be “locking down supply of components” for headsets so as to corner the market. That seems pretty unlikely, but the Rift has every reason to be concerned about their competitor. Several users in the full thread mention the Vive, with some saying they’ve ordered both headsets and plan to cancel the other pre-order based on whichever VR package shows up first.

If you’ve already pre-ordered a Rift, here’s another reason to reconsider: significant privacy concerns about the Oculus Rift still remain. The Rift’s privacy policy includes a lot of verbiage about what types of personal data they plan to collect, including users’ IP addresses. The policy even stipulates that Oculus may provide this information to their owner, Facebook, or other “related companies.” Unfortunately, the Oculus Rift doesn’t give users a way to opt out of providing this information, unless you want to “opt out” by canceling your pre-order. You might have some extra time to make that decision, now!

(via The Verge, image via TED Talks on Flickr)

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Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (relay.fm/isometric), and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (robotknights.com).