VirZOOM Arcade

VirZOOM Arcade

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mors Dec 28, 2017 @ 8:24am
VZ Sensor - For commercial license only? Why?
VZ Sensor For commercial license only The VZ Sensor hooks onto any stable exercise bike to turn it into a VirZOOM bike. This is for you if... I already own a bike I need a bike that supports over 260 lbs I can track heart rate and calories myself I use a VR system on mobile phone or PC (not PS4) See full product specifications and details Available for commercial license only. Email business@virzoom.com to learn more.

WHY?
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Showing 1-15 of 21 comments
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Dec 28, 2017 @ 2:39pm 
That's a fair question, and I'm sorry we have to disappoint so many people for the time being. Ultimately, though, we do still want to get VZ Sensor into the hands of anybody who's got a VR setup and an exercise bike – we're just still working out the best way to get there. While we're happy with how pre-order users are using their VZ Sensors, the process of getting those first VZ Sensor units into people's hands taught us that we have some extra steps to take before we can scale up sales through our website to the consumer market at large. In the meantime, we're focusing additional VZ Sensor sales on commercial licenses to fitness centers, and continuing to sell VZ Bikes directly from our website and through retailers. As soon as we have news about other distribution plans for VZ Sensor, we'll be sure to announce it on our website, Facebook, and Twitter accounts.
Last edited by Jason at VirZOOM; Dec 28, 2017 @ 2:40pm
BigB Dec 29, 2017 @ 10:27pm 
This is a really dumb business move.....I would have bought one already if i could just buy the sensor. I have a bike, its a good bike and i dont need another. Plus I just bought a $1000 vive, $400 Video card and would drop the $99 on the sensor without having the bike...but $350 on a bike i have no room to put...not a chance. I may be back to check periodically, but someone is going to beat you to it now that the Vive trackers are out. Just have a think about how many small sensors you could sell ( even at $150) compared to the bikes considering the majority of peole this would interest would likely have a good excersie bike ( i dont know if yours is good, but mine cost a hell of a lot more than $350) .... just a really dumb business move is all i can say
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 2 @ 7:20am 
I'm sorry you feel that way, and I totally get why you do. I can't get into the nitty gritty business details behind the decision (both because some of that information is confidential and because it's beyond my area of expertise), but for what it's worth, our business team is very aware of the risks and challenges of holding off and of jumping in before we're ready, and they're quite confident in this direction right now. We are looking forward to selling VZ Sensor more widely when we know we're ready to do it right, though – I hope you're still excited for it when I'm able to announce it.
mors Jan 2 @ 9:46am 
Originally posted by BigB:
but someone is going to beat you to it now that the Vive trackers are out.

This could be solved selling a pay version of trackers-enabled VirZOOM suite. I'm trackers owner and I'd be happy to buy it
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 2 @ 10:44am 
As I said, I'm not the business guy, so I can't really comment too much on that, but I'll pass the comment along to the team! We have a small dev team that's pretty busy working on both new content we think a lot of users will be excited about, and getting where we need to be to take VZ Sensor further, so working in new suggestions is always kind of a balancing act. I'm happy to hear and pass along all feedback, though!
I'd like to support your guys but I think this decison is rediculous. $399 USD + an EXTRA $100 for shipping + + exchange/customs/duty/gst ++ puts this at close to $900 for your bike to my door in Canada (I'm just north of WA) when I could be mailed some sensors and a controller mount. If cycles in a gym setting can be easily adapted than those of us with decent bikes could do the same. Of course, not much money to be made that way right?

So much for bringing fitness to the masses. I guess us poor slobs north of the 49th are on our own :steamfacepalm:

Why not sell the sensor kits and charge for your software or intelgrations into other titles? Regardless I do wish you guys well and commend you for your innovation. Unfortunately I'll have to wait for someone to leverage the vive trackers and allow us to utilize our own treadmills, elipticals, etc to sweat in VR :steamhappy:
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 9 @ 6:00am 
The answer to "why not" is kind of complicated. I'm actively working out this week what I can share and how, and where we can go from here with selling VZ Sensor to home users. I can at least reassure you it's not a cash grab situation where we're sneering down at the little guy while we fill our pockets. Long story short: We couldn't stay in business by just mailing you a Sensor and a controller mount, at least right now. Charging for software or integrations is a trickier business than it sounds, but it's one option. And there are other options. All those options take time to evaluate and get going. We've been evaluating various options, working on next steps to get VZ Sensor to more users in a way that we can sustain as a small business. We just need to do the work to get it right, and that takes time.

In the meantime, I can understand why it's frustrating that our website might make it sound like we're laughing all the way to the bank. We really have to update that to better reflect what's really going on. I'm sorry that all comes across so badly, and that it's taking awhile to get this product and our sales and support processes where they need to be before we can sell VZ Sensor to everybody who wants it.
Ace Jan 9 @ 7:06am 
For what it's worth, I think people (myself included) would be willing to pay for expanded content... like paying a few bucks for new games, or 99 cents for new maps for existing games, stuff like that.
mors Jan 9 @ 7:23am 
Originally posted by Jason at VirZOOM:
We couldn't stay in business by just mailing you a Sensor and a controller mount

at least, the truth


But you know, nothing will prevent someone from producing the same object, the same software, and taking this market share when VR becomes bigger. In this way your name will not be bound to a solution, but only to an overpriced bike.


Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 9 @ 9:53am 
"We couldn't stay in business by just mailing you a Sensor and a controller mount, AT LEAST RIGHT NOW," I wrote. That last part you skipped over is important. We're actively working on making it so we CAN do this as soon as possible. "Someone MIGHT beat us to a similar solution while we work to get this right" is a much more acceptable risk than "if we rush into this it WILL be a disaster."

I'm not trying to hide the truth here. I'm doing my best to be clear and honest every step of the way. We're a small startup of about 25 people who do this because we're passionate about it. We honestly believe we make something that can improve people's lives, and we want to get it into people's hands (and not just rich people's hands) as soon as we reasonably can. We care about doing a good job on this. The real cash grab would be if we rushed to sell these things and cut corners because we didn't take the time to be smart about it.

I appreciate that so many people are excited to get their hands on this. Our goal is to make sure that when you do get your hands on it, the experience is just as great as you were hoping it would be. We just need some time.
Spyder17 Jan 9 @ 11:13pm 
Just wondering if this has anything to do with the connectivity issues that you were having? Would definately make since to back off if you needed additional time to sort out problems. I know from dealing with your company that you would have them out if it could be done and will as soon as possible.
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 10 @ 8:20am 
No, we think that's a bug with ghost data in Tank. Got some people working on it. Hope to patch it soon.

As I mentioned before, I have been working on determining what I can explain in greater detail (without violating any agreements with partners). I'll be back to post on that soon.
Jason at VirZOOM  [developer] Jan 10 @ 1:01pm 
Okay, I have finally sorted out some details I can share without breaking any agreements with partners! I think this should help paint a better picture than I've been able to offer so far.

The decision to hold off on VZ Sensor comes from a mix of business and technical concerns that just take a while to sort through. One of the biggest factors, though, was that pretty late in the development process, our retail partners informed us that we would need to make a handlebar-mounted button in order for them to be able to sell it. We've sold enough Sensors and Bikes through our own website already to know that we really need to rely on retail partners going forward, so we have to take that kind of statement very seriously.

So, what are the implications of this? Well, the original design of the VZ Sensor was based on the expectation that you'd just use your handheld controllers from your VR system – your Vive controller, Gear VR controller, etc. Most people who pre-ordered VZ Sensor haven't reported any trouble with this, but (a) we do know that some folks who ordered were still confused about all the VR/PC/phone/controller stuff they needed to already own or buy from other vendors, and (b) we understand how folks could see taking a hand off the handlebars as a potential safety concern. So we're now working on manufacturing handlebar-mounted buttons. Designing, testing, and manufacturing new hardware is a pretty time consuming task on top of all the other stuff we're working on. And adding another doodad to the VZ Sensor has even broader ramifications beyond making the doodad itself, such as changing the packaging, updating the pricing to satisfy both what we can afford and what the market will find reasonable, determining what's involved with coordinating with retailers who'll sell VZ Sensor with complete VR bundles, anticipating increased technical support and bug tracking needs with more potential failure points, and so on.

Even after we get that button manufactured and new packaging printed, though, I can't say for sure we'll be able to just stick it in a box, ship it out, and call it a day. As I said, we're a 25-person team, maintaining a pretty lean startup. We know that as soon as we ramp up sales of a lower-cost product sold widely through major retailers, we need to scale our business to support that. Hiring takes time. Expanding our telemetry system to more effectively differentiate commercial use from personal use (which are charged differently and have different warranties to account for different use cases) takes time to build. Even just educating outside contractors to provide additional customer and technical support takes time, especially considering that many of our support requests aren't actually problems with our hardware or software, but problems with people's PCs, phones, and VR headsets.

Meanwhile, we're working on creating new content and features for VirZOOM Arcade, creating new content even beyond VirZOOM Arcade, fixing bugs in our live games, and supporting fitness centers that are installing VirZOOM Arcade on their commercial-grade bikes – and that's just the stuff that we're allowed to talk about publicly. We've got a lot going on.

I hope this helps provide some context for what I mean when I say that we're working on getting where we need to be to widely distribute VZ Sensor, but it'll take time. We really are actively working on it! I understand why it might feel like we could or should just sell (the original, pre-order version of) VZ Sensor to anybody who visits our website, but we just don't have the setup to sustain that on a day-to-day basis and allow us to get all the other work done that we're doing. We really do need to work with retailers to make this happen.

All of that said, we're obviously really pleased that there are so many people who are so excited to get their hands on this as soon as they can. We understand that there are devs who want development units to create VirZOOM-ready software, journalists looking for promotional units to get ahead of the curve, and home users who'd be happy to give feedback on their experience before the retail release. I'm currently working with some folks here to figure out what the logistics and hardware fees might be. If you managed to get through this wall of text and you fit into one of those categories, email me at support@virzoom.com and I'll get back to you when I know more about what our options are. For all the reasons stated above, we can't just sell through our website alongside the Bike, and I can't promise that I'll be able to get out a VZ Sensor dev, promo, or test unit to everyone who emails about it. We absolutely want to get the Sensor out to everyone who wants one in due time, though. We just want to make sure we do it right.
I was wondering how the sensor would work with no handlebars with controls. I think it would be hard to hold a controller and exercise at the same time. Adding the handlbar mounted button makes sense.
mors Jan 10 @ 9:50pm 
handlebar-mounted button will be really awesome, I hope to see it soon
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