Samsung reveals virtual reality headset powered by a smartphone

Samsung logoSamsung announced plans to release its own virtual reality headset that will use its latest Note smartphone at a press conference Wednesday in New York. The Samsung Gear VR includes a set of headbands and a holster for the new Galaxy Note 4 to secure the phone to a wearer's face and will represent the first consumer product from virtual reality tech company Oculus.

The headset needs no wires and relies entirely on the Note 4's battery and the hardware in the mount, unlike Oculus's own Rift headset. The device tracks movement with an accelerometer and gyroscope, according to Engadget.

Samsung Gear VR

Samsung referred to the headset as a "virtual cinema" that would get content from studios including Marvel and Dreamworks. The headset will also be able to handle games and a slightly delayed video passthrough using the feed from the Note 4's 16-megapixel rear camera.

Samsung claimed that the inputs have a latency under 20 milliseconds, and the AMOLED display offers a 96-degree viewing angle. Notably, the Gear VR cannot track depth, so if the wearer moves his or her head back and forth in real life, the movement is not reflected in the image on the Note 4's screen.

Oculus Chief Technology Officer John Carmack appeared onstage to discuss some of the work that went into the Gear VR. "Completely mobile VR is a magical thing," Carmack said. "It's a hard problem to do well." Carmack noted that the high pixel density of the AMOLED display "helps kill motion blur" and that the software architecture helps keep a game's visuals smooth even if the device is overloaded.

"We have a custom kernel driver that our sensor talks to that cuts out hardware middlemen," Carmack said. The device has a "constant clock rate" that developers can optimize for, and it does not use power fluctuations to save energy or throttle.

Aside from the hardware and software development, Carmack told the audience that Oculus and Samsung plan to offer "Oculus VR Cinema" films, which will include previously released ones like Kung Fu Panda as well as "360 experience videos." The companies also plan to release VR-oriented games. "We're investing in the mobile VR ecosystem to make sure top-tier partners keep developing great content," Carmack said.

The device has no price or release date yet, though Samsung tells Engadget that the Gear VR will be out "this year." Oculus' own consumer version of the Rift still has yet to be assigned a release date, possibly as a result of the company's acquisition by Facebook.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Galaxy Note 4, Samsung

Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
Your comment:

Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party

Last news

A mobile hotspot in Australia will be capable of hitting gigabit speeds on the go
A new game could be in the works as Blizzard appears to have been hiring for a Diablo-related project
Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri will speak at MWC 2017
However what if you could go way, way back?
The Helio P15 packs an octa-core Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 2.2GHz
Samsung claims up to 27-percent higher performance or 40-percent lower power
Preliminary data for October shows another Windows 10 boom
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
HP Slate 7 is a 7-inch Android 4 Tablet PC with good sound
A cost-effective, 7-inch tablet PC from a renowned manufacturer
October 25, 2013 / 4

News Archive



Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments