Samsung Working with Oculus on VR Headset for Smartphones
Image courtesy of: OVRN
Early rumors of Samsung building its own virtual reality headset to compete against the Oculus Rift seem to have taken an interesting turn. According to new details by Engadget, it appears Oculus VR and Samsung are actually working together on a virtual reality headset that will be compatible with Samsung’s high-end smartphones.
Under the collaborative partnership, Samsung will get early access to Oculus’ mobile software development kit (SDK), and in return, gives Oculus early access to Samsung’s “next-gen” organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display panels, that support resolutions higher than 1080p—a key component to deliver a superior VR gaming experience in the consumer version of the Oculus Rift.
Apparently, Samsung’s VR headset will not include a built-in dedicated screen, instead, users would insert their mobile phone device directly into the front of the headset to be used as the display. An added benefit would also allow users to utilize the phone’s rear-facing camera to see the outside world and interact through augmented reality. Other features such as motion-tracking would be handled by the headset’s accelerometer and other built-in sensor technology.
While Oculus is initially focused on gaming, Samsung wants to build its VR headset primarily around media consumption, according to Engadget’s unnamed sources.
This strategic partnership benefits both companies to ultimately deliver a solid virtual reality device to the consumer market. However, aside from the reward of having the world’s largest electronics company, Samsung, invest its money and marketing power into virtual reality—the risk of this particular headset and technology not living up to expectations could potentially have consumers questioning whether VR is ready for mainstream.
No word on when Samsung’s VR headset will hit the market. We will continue to follow this story as it develops.