HTC revealed their new Vive Tracker at CES 2017 earlier this month. The Vive Tracker is a device that can be detected by the Vive's Lighthouse system, and once it's attached to an object, it can be replicated in a virtual reality space. The Tracker opens the door for accessory makers to create swords, guns, shields, and any number of other objects for use in VR games.
However, don't expect the market to be flooded with the same kind of knock-off accessories we've seen in the industry in the past. HTC will be establishing an official certification process for accessories that manufacturers will have to pass to get a stamp of approval. This process will establish a measure for customers of which accessories work best with the HTC Vive Tracker and make it easier to find and purchase quality products.
Although HTC hasn't released details on what the Vive Tracker certification process would consist of, they are making sure that accessory makers are getting the support they need to ensure their products will be ready to go to market. HTC is giving away a thousand Trackers to various companies around the world to spur interest in the new possibilities the Tracker offers the HTC Vive platform.
Hopefully, HTC can set a standard for the certification that allows developers to quickly add accessory support and prevent incompatibilities with games as well as quick obsolescence as new Tracker accessories come to market. So far the HTC Vive Tracker hasn't received a firm release date, but the company hopes to launch it sometime in the second quarter of 2017.