HTC’s latest tease on its Twitter account looks related to the lip-tracking module for its Vive headsets.
Yesterday the company dropped a second teaser tweet, this time with the not-so-subtle message “Express yourself.” Some fans replied to the tweet with an image of the lip tracking module attached to the Vive Pro headset. The clip that attaches the device to the bottom of the headset looks near-identical.
— Rλmes VR (@vr_rames) March 8, 2021
Paired with last week’s tease that included the message “It’s your move”, plus numerous replies that use the word ‘tracking’ and even a more recent reference to Avatar, it certainly seems like HTC is teasing new add-ons for its existing Vive headsets, rather than an all-new device. Yesterday we reported that HTC’s President of Vive in China, Alvin Wang Graylin, had confirmed HTC will release a new standalone headset in 2021, but it now seems less likely that’s what’s being teased here.
HTC revealed the lip-tracking module for Vive all the way back at GDC 2019. At the time the company said it had no plans for a full release of the device. The kit hangs below the headset and reads movement in your mouth, which a given experience could then use to replicate on a virtual avatar of yourself. Paired with the eye-tracking in the HTC Vive Pro Eye, it’s feasible that HTC could soon be bringing very expressive virtual avatars to VR. Go a step further and implement the Vive Trackers for full-body tracking, and there’s a lot of potential here.
What do you think HTC is teasing? Let us know in the comments below!