Why wait? The HTC Vive is available now for immediate shipping

All this while Oculus Rift orders are still months out

The virtual reality wars are in full swing right now, with both the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive released this spring, but there's been a small problem: they've been incredibly hard to get into your home.

But that's finally changing with the HTC Vive, as the company announced today that the PC-driven headset is available for purchase via the official website - no pre-order required. New purchases are available in 24 countries and are promised to ship within 72 hours of your order.

Contrast that to the harrowing experience of Oculus Rift buyers. Many people who pre-ordered that headset prior to its release are still waiting on units, thanks to huge delays due to component shortages.

Curiously, Oculus started shipping units to retail stores early last month, despite pre-ordering customers still waiting for their hardware. Currently, a newly ordered Oculus Rift isn't set to arrive until August, with the company's new Touch motion controllers not set for release until later this year.

It could well be a matter of increased demand for the Oculus Rift, which is both cheaper than the HTC Vive and also a more polished, retail-ready experience - but it's not a matter of quality, at least in our opinion.

In our head-to-head showdown, we picked the HTC Vive as offering the more immersive experience thanks to its room-scale VR approach. And our extensive HTC Vive and Oculus Rift reviews have even more detail to soak in, should you be in the market for a high-end VR headset right about now.

Besides selling the headset online to new buyers, HTC is also fulfilling Vive pre-orders placed via retail partners like GameStop and the Microsoft Store, and has announced new demo locations across the United States for anyone who wants to give it a try. It's safe to say that the Vive is now fully and properly "released" - how long will it be before the Rift can claim the same?

[Source: HTC]