Facebook Pushes Deeper Into VR With Oculus Go Wireless Headset

Facebook has revealed a portable self-contained virtual reality (VR) headset. which will sit in between the high-end Ouclus Rift and smartphone-powered Samsung Gear VR headsets.

Dubbed the Oculus Go, Facebook’s chief executive Mark Zuckerberg took the covers off the social network’s latest foray into VR at a conference for developers, describing it as the “most accessible VR headset ever”.

The headset has all the components it needs to power VR experiences on the wearable device itself, so there is no need to plug it into a PC or external console, or use a smartphone to power it.

Another Oculus headset

Custom designed high-resolution lenses focus onto an fast-switch LCD panel  for the VR viewing, while spatial audio handles the 3D sound without the need for headphones, though a 3.5mm jack is present and correct to provide wearers with a little privacy.

A wireless controller is also included, and look to offer motion control in a similar vein to the controllers seen with Google’s Daydream VR platform.

Other details of the hardware reaming under wraps, but Facebook said the Oculus Go will be priced at $199 (£150) and will be released early 2018.

VR arguably remains a niche area of the technology world, despite the growing number of VR headsets available and the likes of Google’s Cardboard goggles offering a very affordable if basic gateway into VR.

However, by offering an all-in-one wireless package at a seemingly reasonable price, the Oculus Go could be a device that gets more people on board with VR that offers a better experience than devices powered by smartphones but is not as costly or demands a high-end PC like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift.

For developers, the Oculus Go could widen the Oculus VR ecosystem, giving them more motivation to develop VR and immersive apps and software that will have a decent chance of being used by a good number of people.

Quiz: What do you know about virtual reality?

Roland Moore-Colyer

As News Editor of Silicon UK, Roland keeps a keen eye on the daily tech news coverage for the site, while also focusing on stories around cyber security, public sector IT, innovation, AI, and gadgets.

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