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Report: Samsung Building VR Headset For Its Phones & Tablets 49

An anonymous reader writes "Engadget reports that Samsung is working on virtual reality technology to compete with the Oculus Rift. Their work is fairly far along, and it's expected to be announced this year. It's being built to function in tandem with Samsung's flagship mobile devices, most likely their upcoming Galaxy phones and tablets. From the article: 'We're told it has an OLED screen, as good or better than in the second Rift dev kit; it's not clear how the headset connects to your phone/tablet, but we're guessing it's a wired connection rather than wireless. ...This is a device meant for use with games. What type of games? Android games! Sure, but which ones? That's certainly the question. Great games make the platform, and VR games are especially tough to crack given the newness of the medium. One thing's for sure: most major games won't work on VR as direct ports.' The report also suggests Samsung is targeting a lower price point than its competitors. True or not, it will hopefully help drive down prices for all upcoming VR tech." Meanwhile, DARPA is experimenting with the Oculus Rift for cyberwar visualization.
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Report: Samsung Building VR Headset For Its Phones & Tablets

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  • No! Oculus is the Christ-child! They are the saviour of humanity! They invented VR tech and are the only force for good in the universe.... or at least that's what all the major tech publications keep trying to ram down my throat.

    VR is old hat. The interesting stuff was patented decades ago. Oculus is just one of dozens of companies that will be leveraging lower cost displays and sensors to deliver an acceptible VR experience.

    • There is a video with Palmer, John and some other guy (it was at a Quake event or somesuch), where they were talking about the Rift, and one comment really stood out to me. Palmer said (and I paraphrase) "I don't want to make the ultimate headset, many companies tried to focus on delivering one key component, either resolution, latency or FoV etc. What I'm interested in is creating a single package that's 'good enough' in all areas to get the market going. Once people see that VR is finally possible, and is

      • by jasno ( 124830 )

        Palmer sounds like a narcissist. He's crazy if he thinks he or his company is solely responsible for driving VR.

        He jumped the gun and showed off his companies demo products - a fancy marketing trick if you will. Big deal. VR was coming regardless. Now that the displays and sensors finally allow a product that a consumer can afford there will be many VR devices. The technology is old and proven.

        If OR had never existed, we might not be *talking* about VR in 2014, but we'd still be wearing it in 2016.

        • I agree, he may be many things, but credit where credit is due. I'm looking for a different term to "single-handedly" because I know it took many people to get Rift working, including the people at valve to sort out latency issues. He is possibly a person who brought it all together, similar to how Jobs took all these technologies at the right time and combined them into the iPhone. Right or wrong, Jobs is credited often with the dawn of the smartphone era. Someone else might have done it a year or 2 later,

          • by GrahamJ ( 241784 )
            I think that's the problem we're seeing in this thread - there are people who see the value in creating a new market by integrating and iterating on existing technologies, and those who don't. Some see the iPod, iPhone, iPad, OR etc. as game changers and others merely as inevitable integrations.

            Rather than labels I prefer to focus on the outcome. The iPhone DID drastically change the industry, for example, and even though bits of VR tech have been around for decades, I'm pretty sure OR will do the same.
    • A lot of Oculus tech is actually in its software. It uses predictive head tracking to make the output much more seamless to the user.

      Watch this example of timewarping
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... [youtube.com] //I believe this is one of the things Zenimax feels they own.

    • At least OR headset looks like it will be mostly platform agnostic. (Imagine if they make a compelling demo at E3 show using OR + upcoming Destiny game from Bungee on both PS4 and XBone. That's "shut up and take my money" territory right there.) So... Android games? Are there any good ones that rely on 3D acceleration? I'm assuming that would require doing native development for Android, which still looks like the wild, Wild West of game development.
  • If this has forward facing cameras I could see outdoor game designers doing some really cool stuff. http://www.comeoutandplay.org/ [comeoutandplay.org]
  • That DARPA video looks like they took the meme "a GUI interface in Visual Basic" and then watched all the episodes of Ghost in a Shell back to back. I don't think that will be terrible useful, because geographic location doesn't matter enough for what they are doing.
    Give me a terminal any day.

    Still, if you could make something like that for my superiors to watch how many things my scripts do in a day, then we are golden.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I don't think it's going to "connect to your phone." I think it's going to BE your phone.

    Picture an Oculus Rift with no display built in, but instead a slot. You slide your phone in, clamp it in place.

    Now you get a high res display, accelerometer, gyroscope, an audio port to plug in earphones, a camera for doing head tracking with optical flow or looking for fiducials (possibly QR codes), or you could do augmented reality...

    All they really have to build is the ski-goggles that hold the phone in place, and

  • Year 1: "You guys, this is even better than [current industry leader]'s tech! Amazing!"
    Year 2: "Hardly anybody who has updated to version 5.4 still bleeds from their eyeballs. [current industry leader] hasn't updated their tech for months!"
    Year 3: "Samsung is the undisputed leader in virtual reality headsets! They've shipped five times as many units as [current industry leader], and there's no stopping this tidal wave!"
    Year 6: "Hey, you should really check out the high-end Samsung VR units. They're every

  • for my Samsung Galaxy ankle bracelet.

  • This will likely be paired with Googles Project Tango for the next version of the nexus: http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/20... [cnn.com]

    But I can't see a real practical use for it in the near future other than some newer, more spectacular teen texting while driving accidents.

    The real money will be combining this with an overlay and transparent background in a device like google glass. The initial product will likely suck, but the patents they'd soak up will be extremely valuable in the future.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Has Samsung ever made anything original?

    • lol no. They are still trying to do the "next thing" ahead of Apple or anyone else. First was the watch, now this, expect much more.
  • hmm yes of course
  • That's because they stole brain juice from Zenimax!

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