Google Announces New Standalone, Wireless VR Headset

No wires, phone, or computer.

11 Comments

Earlier this week at CES 2018, HTC announced a more powerful, higher-resolution version of its high-end Vive VR headset, meant to push the upper boundaries of virtual reality even further. But there's also been a big development in the mobile VR space: Google has announced a new headset based on its Daydream VR platform that's fully standalone.

It's called the Mirage Solo, and it was built in conjunction with hardware manufacturer Lenovo. In contrast to Google's first headset, the Daydream View, which required a smartphone, the Mirage Solo is fully standalone and fully wireless.

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It has a 110-degree field of view, which puts it ahead of other mobile headsets and brings it into line with the Rift, Vive, and PSVR. It runs on 4GB of RAM and a Qualcomm mobile processor, and Lenovo has built it with cameras and sensors to give it a much higher head-tracking capability than mobile headsets are normally capable of. It also has a 1440p screen and 64GB of internal storage.

The Mirage Solo will compete head-to-head with Oculus Go, Facebook's own fully standalone headset. However, the Oculus Go is coming out at a much lower price range: Facebook is targeting $200 for the headset, while the Mirage Solo will likely cost around $400 in the US. Lenovo and Google's headset is currently scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2018.

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Avatar image for chiefwiggum16
chiefwiggum16

Call me when vr has

4k in each eye
180 degree viewing angle
120fps minimum
until then everyone else enjoy but my motion sickness prone ass will be right here gaming on tv

Avatar image for joshrmeyer
JoshRMeyer

On my GearVR the display has to be set to full 4k resolution and it still doesn't look that good... Maybe just bad optics. I wonder if this has improved on the newer(1 year newer lol) VR units. I think the PSVR is 1080p but looks miles better than my 4k GearVR, so I don't know.

Avatar image for xshinobi
Xshinobi

I wonder how well this will play with glasses, that concern has been keeping me away from getting into VR.

Avatar image for videogameninja
videogameninja

Sheesh, how many VR headsets is that now? 1000!?

Seems like everyone and their uncle is coming out with a VR headset as of late (And yes, I do realize this is not Google's first attempt.). Hey, I'm not complaining. More competition is always a good thing and it also means price drops.

-VIDEOGAME NINJA VR HEADSET APPROVED-

Avatar image for lionheartssj1
lionheartssj1

@videogameninja: They need to be careful not to fragment the user base or they will tank VR. Headset exclusive games are one way they're going to shoot themselves. Having headsets that can only play their own demo games is another (looking at the Star Wars VR headset).

Avatar image for aross2004
aross2004

@lionheartssj1: There's no way the VR sector could feasibly support that many different variants at this time. It should kind of just work itself out via attrition.

Avatar image for videogameninja
videogameninja

@lionheartssj1:

Very true. I think that's something a lot of people don't sit back and think about. It's even worse for big name companies as they are more focused on jumping on the latest trend first and in their minds hoping they can become the next Nintendo or something.

But you are absolutely right. Can you imagine if 30 companies came out at the same time as Nintendo did with the NES, each one with hardware comparable? Nintendo might not have had the success nor impact they did and potentially gaming may not have "exploded" the way it did being under a multitude of different umbrellas at the time.

Another example are all the systems that came out during the Playstation/Sega Saturn era. Consoles like the Jaguar, Panasonic 3DO, and more didn't make the cut and as a result didn't fragment that audience further but can you imagine if they did? If they all did manage to take off in some capacity we might have 40 plus big name consoles on the market resulting in a dilution of hardware today.

I can't help but think about what you said and imagine how VR success might be effected if only 1 or 2 companies had a model out right now with all the games being offered. Yeah, probably then VR might take off. However, at the same time I don't think we would expect to see the huge drop in prices in the hardware as of late thanks in part to competition.

-TOO FRAGMENTED NINJA APPROVED-

Avatar image for gfantini
gfantini

@videogameninja: I'm not convinced that market fragmentation is such a bad thing. I mean, it is bad for the many initiatives that will tank, as well as for consumers who end up making the wrong choice. But the market itself will dictate the winners and VR will eventually strive.

You see, the VHS/Betamax dispute didn't prevent video tapes from becoming ubiquitous. Nor did the DVD standards war. And we're seeing something similar now with HDR.

The increasing number of industry players is not only good because of competition. Having big names like Google and Facebook investing heavily in VR is a clear sign of the tech's huge potential.

Avatar image for lionheartssj1
lionheartssj1

@videogameninja: You're right. The competition is great from a price perspective and, I would think, from a tech development perspective. I think barring some Betamax/VHS Blu-Ray/HDDVD culling of the headsets, their only hope of keeping the consumer in it is to baseline the tech and make the games playable across the board. That will open up developers to make games that can reach a wider audience without spending inordinate amount of effort porting it to different headsets (because that won't happen from a business standpoint).

Avatar image for jyml8582
jyml8582

And the play time?

Avatar image for deactivated-5ae060efb3bf6

@jyml8582: Comes with a car sized battery that is corded option. :-)