Oculus Rift will be available at retail in North America starting May 7, when leading electronics retail chain Best Buy gets some units in stock nationwide. For people who don’t like Best Buy, Rift will also be available online from Microsoft and Amazon, starting May 6 at 9am PT/12pm ET.
While there is nothing wrong with Oculus seeking to expand their product’s retail footprint, the fact of the matter is that this comes at the expense of many pre-orders, which remain unshipped and unfulfilled even now, more than a month since the pioneering VR headset’s original launch.
Oculus, on their part, are trying their best to right by the early pre-orders the best they can- they are going to let people cancel their pre-orders, and go purchase an Oculus from a store, while still retaining all of their pre-order entitlements. Since pre-orders aren’t charged until they are shipped, people won’t end up paying twice, either.
“We know that many pre-order customers are still waiting for their Rifts, so we’re offering those customers a chance to purchase Rift from retail instead – while keeping their pre-order benefits, like the EVE: Valkyrie Founder’s Pack and priority status for Touch pre-orders,” said the company on its blog.
“Starting May 6th, if you’re interested, simply go to your order status and let us know you’ve purchased a Rift at retail, and we’ll cancel your pre-order. Your EVE: Valkyrie entitlement will appear in your order history.”
I guess that is a good gesture- but I would much rather that they have sorted out their manufacturing and shipping woes before rushing to launch, than these kinds of compromises.
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