Facebook and Oculus are looking to expand their VR hardware offering, with the latter reportedly planning to bring a new $200 standalone headset to market in 2018.
As reported by Bloomberg, “the company plans to unveil a cheaper, wireless device that the company is betting will popularize VR the way Apple did the smartphone.”
“Like current Oculus products, the new headset will be geared toward immersive gaming, watching video and social networking, said the people who asked not to be named to discuss a private matter.”
Reports say that the device is currently code-named “Pacific” and will be lighter in form-factor than Samsung’s Gear VR headset.
“The device’s design and features aren’t finalized and could still change, but the idea is that someone will be able to pull the headset out of their bag and watch movies on a flight just the way you can now with a phone or tablet.”
Bloomberg say that Oculus intends to start briefing developers on the new headset as soon as October, ahead of the company’s Oculus Connect 4 conference.
The news comes following reports that Samsung might be looking to do take their VR venture down a similar avenue.
At the most recent Mobile World Congress in Shanghai, the company showed off its own standalone headset.
The Exyson VR III is an all-in-one headset features a 10nm hexa-core processor with two Samsung M2 CPU cores clocked at 2.5 GHz, four ARM Cortex-A53 CPU cores clocked at 1.7 GHz, ARM Mali G71 MP20 graphics and a dual WQHD+ display with a screen refresh rate of 90 fps.
Sensor-wise, it’s said to come capable of both hand-tracking, gaze-tracking and facial expression recognition.
No word on when, or if, the headset will make it to market. However, past rumors have suggested it’ll potentially be released and marketed under the Samsung Odyssey gaming sub-brand, which debuted overseas earlier this year.