Like other headsets, the Valve Index has been in high demand but limited supply due to the Coronavirus pandemic. While we’ve seen stock of Oculus Quest and Rift starting to return to availability over the last few months, Index has been backordered globally. Though it’s still backordered, the length of backorders are slowly by steadily shrinking. Unfortunately, Base Station orders are still out of stock across the board.
Updated – August 26th, 2020
We checked stock availability for all Index packages across all 31 regions where sold. Our last check in early August showed that the Index ‘Controllers’ package had shipping estimates as little as 3–5 weeks in most regions, though the ‘Headset + Controllers’ package remained at 5–7 weeks, in most regions but continued to report 8+ weeks in US, Canada, and Italy.
Now we’re seeing further improvements to the backorder timeline nearly across the board, including in the US, Canada, and Italy.
In all regions, except for Japan, the ‘Headset + Controllers’ package is expected in 2–4 weeks, the lowest we’ve seen in months. The ‘Controllers’ package remains at 3–5 weeks, while ‘Full Kit’ and ‘Headset’ packages still estimate 8+ weeks. The ‘Base Station’ package is still unavailable across the board.
Given the differences in availability between the various packages, we’d guess that Valve has indefinitely ceased selling any ‘Base Station’ packages so that they don’t further limit the availability of the ‘Full Kit’ (which includes Base Stations).
“We are continuing to make every effort possible to keep up with the ongoing demand and deliver units in a timely fashion, while navigating the challenges of shipping during the pandemic. We appreciate everyone’s patience, and we’ll let you know when we have more specifics to share,” a Valve spokesperson told Road to VR earlier this year.
Index had been backordered by eight weeks or more in all regions since a small supply of new stock was gobbled up just before Half-Life: Alyx launched in late March. This month is the first time we’ve seen shipping estimates as low as 2–4 weeks on any of the available packages.
Despite the backorders, it’s been possible to register your interest in any of the Index packages (except for the base stations). To reserve a spot in line, check out the Index store page and click the order button.
Valve is then sending out notifications by email when stock is available, giving customers one week to pull the trigger. Even so, when offered the option to buy, no specific estimate for delivery is provided leaving, customers wondering how long they’ll be waiting.
Like other headsets, the Chinese-manufactured Index saw a double-whammy this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic: supply decreasing due to manufacturing disruptions and demand increasing due to shelter-in-place orders in many parts of the globe.
Oculus had been in the same boat; in the last month however we’ve seen Oculus steadily beating back its Quest and Rift S backorders, showing that manufacturing of the headset has picked up significant steam. When Index which will the same level of availability isn’t clear, but we’ve got our eye on the situation.
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