Samsung is developing on all manner of fronts these days, and the latest piece of hardware which is in the works, according to the rumour mill, is a VR headset.
The word from Engadget’s sources is that Samsung is not only working on virtual reality headgear, but that the company will make an announcement on the matter in 2014.
Apparently Samsung is keen to beat rival VR headsets from Facebook and Sony – Oculus Rift and Morpheus – to the market. Note that this project is distinct from the Gear Glass headwear, which is a rumoured Google Glass rival; and funnily enough, that’s expected to beat Google to the punch with a September launch at IFA. It seems Samsung really wants to be first, though hopefully we won’t see rushed and clunky products as a result.
Samsung’s VR headgear – which has apparently already seen prototypes dispatched to developers – is designed to be hooked up to and powered by a Samsung smartphone or tablet. Details are thin on the ground, but Engadget claims it will have an OLED screen which is at least as good as the second Rift developer kit’s display (see our hands-on with Oculus Rift DK2).
The VR headset will also attempt to walk a budget line, and undercut rival devices. Samsung seems serious about trying to push this one pretty hard, then.
Let’s just hope that the potential rush to market factor we’ve mentioned doesn’t lead to a product which isn’t polished enough – as with virtual reality, that could be a crippling factor. You can’t afford to get things wrong with VR as when badly implemented the tech can potentially cause people to feel sick; that’s why Oculus Rift has been in development for so long (though they’ve finally announced that Rift should be out in 2015).
The fact remains, though, that an unpolished VR product could ruin the public’s perception of virtual reality, and risk fouling the playing field for everyone else.
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