Oculus Rift Stops Production Of Dev Kits, Cites Lack Of Materials

The (virtual) world is ending! Ah! OK, it's not really. It's just that the Oculus Rift folks have apparently run out of bits to put together into the bigger bits we've come to know as the company's prevalent VR headset. The news comes to us via Oculus Rift's community manager Andres Hernandez and while it sounds bad, it's not as terrible as you might think.

Hernandez delivered the update via the Oculus Rift sub-reddit, explaining that although new kits aren't being manufactured right now, stock does remain for ordering in particular countries (of which Australia is included).

Here's the full post:

Certain components used in the Oculus Rift developer kit are no longer being manufactured, meaning they are no longer available to us for production. As a result, we don't have the necessary materials to produce additional kits. We still have some stock available, but we're quickly running out. We are looking into alternate sources for the needed components, and we don't yet have a timeline for when additional units will be available. We'll be sure to keep everyone posted.

As we sell out of inventory in each region we plan to suspend sales in that region until we are able to deliver new orders. Currently we are only selling and shipping to the following countries:

United States Canada Countries in the European Union Japan South Korea Australia Switzerland Norway

We never expected to sell so many development kits and VR only made this much progress with the community's support and enthusiasm. Even though we never wanted to sell out, it's a good problem to have — Thank you!

I suppose in the grand scheme of things it's a good problem to have. Hopefully it'll find new places to get its hardware before it becomes a serious issue.

Official Oculus Shipping Status Update (Feb 19th 2014) [Reddit]


    I'm curious to exactly what components aren't being manufactured anymore.

      Heaps of electronic components get discontinued on a regular basis. Most of the time it's a like for like replacement but sometimes a minor PCB redesign is required to accommodate the replacement parts.

      I know my dad has replaced about 5 or 6 components in his product over the last 4 years. That's unplanned replacements not things he wants to upgrade. Usually it's processor chips or LEDs

    Well... we know the Rift WORKS at this point... maybe it's time to start producing the Consumer version? Maybe? Maybe?

      works yes, but if reports are to be believed; it doesn't quite work well enough yet

      Definitely not. It's fun to use, but actually playing games on it is pretty hard with a lot of them.
      some of it's exclusive apps run great, but the only games that run well enough to be played (For me and the people I know) seem to be Valve games, Half-Life 2 in particular.

        Which is the curse of the immersive headset. Without some sort of 'virtual glove' where you see your hands on screen manipulating things in front of you, true direct interface is going to be very hard to do completely. That being said, it doesn't mean a lot of games wont be fun as hell to play. The EVE space fighter looks majorly fun, Star Citizen looks interesting though going by the fact it uses mouse and keyboard, this might be a little frustrating if its a control-complex game?

        If you could use it in ARMA 3 or DayZ for instance, the immersion would be beautiful, but the constantly having to feel around for the right controls might get irritating lol.

          The controls can be so difficult on some games since you can't see 'em, I even bought one of these: https://s3.amazonaws.com/ksr/projects/476061/photo-main.jpg?1370329539 (Not coming for a while though!) just for the movement; the easiest part of it.
          Some games would be awesome on there, for sure and hopefully the developers themselves can see it as a worthwhile investment. I'd love for lots of big games to be designed to work well with this platform, since I really want to see it grow.

          TrackIR5 works a treat in A3 & DZ, I'd love to have a go with the Rift as well but for it to be really practical with those 2 games it'd require BIS to really streamline their controls down to a very tight set you can use without looking at the keyboard. I'm quite the fan of their products but there's no denying that they're shit at streamlining...

    Been thinking about buying one of the Dev kits for a while now, don't know if I should jump in and get one before they run out, or just wait and get the consumer version.

    I should probably just wait seeing as my PC's pretty crap, hoping to build a gaming monster within the next 6 months.

      With the drivers you can buy you can have any game you own work in VR, but it's hit and miss with a lot of them. Very few games actually work in a decently playable state, and some have their own exclusive problems. The Apps themselves built for the OR are great, though they do get a bit samey. It is fun to toy around with, but it has a lot of issues.

    I work in design and production....this happens all the time, why have they got issues and wonder what the component was?

    Just wait for the Sony one being announced on March 17.

    Apparently quite excellent.

    I suppose in the grand scheme of things it’s a good problem to have.I have no head for business but this is a very bad problem to have, especially since it's been made publicly known. Yes, demand is good, but having no supply means that it makes it all the more easier for competitors to capitalise on it and pull new clients away from you. Unless you can give reassurances that you will indeed find a new supplier, current and new clients are going to be all the more tempted to move to another platform that isn't having supply issues because what's the point of developing for a headset no one can buy?

    Hopefully they can sort out the issues because the Occulus looks like one of the stronger entries in the market and I'd hate for some capitalistic company to dominate the market due to weak competition.

      By "good problem to have" people are generally casting an implication to worse problems they could have, it's a very optimistically slanted way to say "things could be worse!" by suggesting that things are actually pretty good.

      As is, demand is outstripping supply which is often a good thing for whoever owns the supply. As for competitors, I doubt there'd be a force that could capitalise on a slight supply hiccup like this on the fly, they'd need to have their devices already well into development. And if they just wanted to push out a quick clone... Well they'd run into similar supply contraints due to the missing component.

      Besides all that, it's not even available to consumers. It's all laying the groundwork with devs so that it can be used in the future, they're much less likely to jump to a lesser known competitor purely because of a production delay.

      Its only the dev-kit, and it is pretty outdated now anyway, Anyone interested seriously in VR development has one already, so this isn't really a problem.
      I wish they would get the newer version out to developers, I'd like to be coding for something with higher resolution and less latency. The existing headset is fun, and surprisingly immersive, but it is hard to develop for as you are never quite sure if the problems are your own execution or the limitations of the existing HMD.

    Hm, I wonder if they'll accumulate in value because of this. Still not regretting getting it over next gen consoles. "Developer Kit" is a fancy way of saying "if you can't develop with it, bug test other peoples stuff for them". ;)

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