HTC, maker of the Vive virtual reality headset for the PC, is raising the price for its subscriptions to the VR apps and games in its Viveport app store. As it does so, it is adding perks for those who pay the monthly fees for access to the titles.
Starting March 22, the Viveport monthly subscription price will rise for $7 to $9. All current Viveport Subscription members and those who sign up before March 22 will keep their $7 monthly price for at least the rest of the 2018.
“We launched subscriptions 10 months ago with 50 apps, and it has been a great success both for consumers and developers,” said Rikard Steiber, president of Viveport, in an interview with GamesBeat. “In Q4, more people were getting paid content through subscriptions than through paid downloads. We are now turning that subscription service into a membership service with benefits.”
Subscribers will get access to exclusive promotions and discounts every month starting in February. To kick off the new membership benefits available to subscribers, Viveport will be sending a free title to all current subscribers this month. Viveport will continue to add value to the subscription through additional benefits and perks as the service grows.
“As a member, you can get benefits like special discounts on apps and games,” Steiber said. “We’ll also launch surprises on a regular basis. We’ll also make it better for developers so we can get more premium content.”
In the fourth quarter, Viveport gave its 30 percent share of VR revenues to developers, enabling the makers of the VR apps to take home 100 percent of the proceeds during the all-important fourth quarter.
“Viveport Subscription has gained incredible momentum and traction among consumers as well as developers,” said Steiber. “Our subscription catalog has grown to over 375 titles, which is more than 600 percent increase since we started the service.”
He added, “We are always looking to support the developer ecosystem and with the subscription increase, developers will now be earning an additional 22 percent from their title in the Subscription catalog. Our exclusive promotions on select titles will also give developers another avenue for marketing their games to our most engaged audience.”
The new price increase will take effect across the 60-plus countries served by Viveport. Asked why Viveport is raising the prices, Steiber said the company is trying to balance consumers and developers.
“If you can get five apps worth $100, then it’s a very good value,” Steiber said. “We have some really good content, and we want to make sure it is a better proposition for developers. By increasing the price and increasing the benefits, consumers can consume more content. We’re finding most of the people who subscribe will continue to do so.”