Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Industry | By Dora Warner

Google teams with HTC and Lenovo to launch standalone Daydream VR headsets

Qualcomm is now working on a reference design, with HTC and Lenovo expected to produce the first consumer sets sometime this year.

As for how well it will work or how it compares to existing VR headsets, we don't yet know.

As a result, a software update will be bringing support for Daydream to the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus later in the year.

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Subsequent to Google's announcement, both Lenovo and HTC have launched pages on their web sites covering the new standalone headsets they are working on for Google.

Google has announced during Google I/O that it will be supporting standalone VR headsets for the Daydream platform which will not require a PC or phone in order to use.

Facebook-owned Oculus is also working on a standalone VR headset, but has not announced launch timing.

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The new range of devices will use a tracking technology called "WordSense" that enables the headset to track its wearer's precise movements in space. We're yet to see exactly what this headset looks like, but we suspect it will be close to the reference devices that Qualcomm has produced in the past. Google has also partnered with HTC and Lenovo for the same.

In a blog post, Google explained,"These devices build on what's already great about smartphone-based VR, and make the experience even easier and more comfortable with WorldSense". They're being marketed as part of Google's Daydream mobile VR platform, but many technical details - as well as any retail pricing - have yet to be announced. A more detailed explainer on how this works was posted online past year by Google's WorldSense development partner Qualcomm.

"With Tango, devices can track motion and understand distances and their position in the real world", said Bavor. All that set-up can be a pain, but this new venture hopes to get you into VR with a press of a button.

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As no external device, such as a smartphone or computer, is required to power the headsets, the website says that users won't have to worry about tripping over wires and "latency should be non-existent".

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