Just over two weeks ago, Oculus finally began shipping its long-awaited virtual reality headset, the Rift, with 30 games available at launch, and the promise of over a hundred more this year. The company opened pre-orders for the headset in January, priced at $599, but while some have already received the device as expected, many others have been told that they face a very long wait for its arrival.
There were already signs of trouble just a few days after launch, when Oculus said that an "unexpected component shortage [had] impacted the original shipping estimates for some early customers". Those affected were told that delivery charges would be waived by way of apology - but the problem appears to be even deeper than it first appeared.
As Polygon reports, some customers who pre-ordered the Rift have now received emails from the company, telling them that their shipments have been delayed by up to two months. An official update was also posted on the Oculus subreddit, reading:
Kickstarter Backers, we're changing your Order History to show "TBD" instead of the date as that date was applicable to the time in which we imported the orders. We've already fulfilled a large number of the orders and more are being fulfilled on a regular cadence. Your Rifts are from a different allocation.
Even many of those who pre-ordered within the first few hours have been told that they won't receive their headsets until June, after originally being promised delivery in April - and unsurprisingly, many have taken to social media to express their dissatisfaction.
Inevitably, this is also having an impact on new orders for the Rift; those who place an order for the headset today won't actually receive it until August.
Oculus apologized in a statement, in which it also said that it hopes to minimize the delays:
The component shortage impacted our quantities more than we expected, and we’ve updated the shipment window to reflect these changes. We apologize for the delay.
We’re delivering Rifts to customers every day, and we’re focused on getting Rifts out the door as fast as we can. We’ve taken steps to address the component shortage, and we’ll continue shipping in higher volumes each week. We’ve also increased our manufacturing capacity to allow us to deliver in higher quantities, faster. Many Rifts will ship less than four weeks from original estimates, and we hope to beat the new estimates we’ve provided.
In order to use the Rift, owners must also have a high-end PC meeting a strict set of minimum requirements. The headset is only supported on Windows PCs; Oculus founder Palmer Luckey was asked last month if there were any plans to extend support to Mac devices, to which he replied: "That is up to Apple. If they ever release a good computer, we will do it."