VR News



My question is, why do the stand alone sets need to be mutually exclusive to PC use? You have the screens and motion tracking built in, so why not put USB/AV plugs on the side and cater to both markets.


It’s a fair question and it got asked about the Oculus Quest at the recent dev conference. The answer was that the decoding hardware would add weight.

Personally I think it is more a business reason of pushing people to join your ecosystem, as buying the software from the device ‘app store’ is where the lost money on hardware is made up.

It doesn’t make sense to us simmers, but it is probably where they are coming from. The standalone VR’s can be thought of as ‘console’, of their own platform, and putting an AV on the side is about as likely as Nintendo allowing your phone or PC to screencast to their Switch - it ain’t happening.


That word…


Yeah…wasn’t it Steam that was giving away those Steam links for $4.99 the last couple years during their sales? Take a hit on the hardware, make it up on the software. So maybe Steam WILL eventually be the hardware driver with VR. Maybe I’m not visionary thinking enough that it seems like VR social doesn’t seem like it will last all that long moreso than VR gaming. Like I can’t envision people putting on a headset regularly to VR chat via some Facebook meeting room. Then again…if your avatar actually becomes you (like indistinguishable from the real you)…maybe there is something there…


Valve are really just a big games shop and not particularly interested in anything else. One frustrating thing about them is they only do ‘defensive’ things at a strategic level. They heard Microsoft wanted to ship Windows 10 with a ‘Windows Games Store’ built-in, so they did a big effort to improving Linux gaming and ‘Steam PCs’ that used it - it wasn’t because they all of a sudden loved Linux, it was so they always had a ‘way out’ to survive if Microsoft ‘Store’ started gaining traction.

Similarly with VR, they want it to exist so they can sell games and because it is ‘neat’, and the HTC partnership was again all about a defensive position in-case Oculus started getting traction with Facebook money and a games store of their own. Valve is more profitable per employee than Google and Facebook. If they wanted to be visionary they would have done it a while before, but that’s not how they roll.

Facebook and Google are advertising companies, so social VR is all about that. It doesn’t sound like a fun future, but it’s fairly foolproof to just follow the money to find the motivation. Apple and Samsung etc are one of the few high-end electronic device makers, so hopefully they’ll offer VR peripherals (i.e. not a console) to keep others honest.


Anyone remember Lemmings? Two players with two mice on the Amiga. So much fighting. Excellent.

So now it looks like it has been (sort of) remade in VR:


First mention of the ‘Rift S’ refresh in the press:

“In the wake of the overhaul’s cancellation, the company will be pursuing a more modest product update — possibly called the “Rift S” — to be released as early as next year, which makes minor upgrades to the device’s display resolution while more notably getting rid of the external sensor-tracking system, sources tell us. Instead, the headset will utilize the integrated “inside-out” Insight tracking system, which is core to Facebook’s recently announced Oculus Queststandalone headset.”

Sort of sounds like putting an input lead on the Oculus Quest SKU and calling it a day until the new advances arrive (eye tracking for foveated rendering, auto-varifocus etc).

Techcrunch is not a fantastically reliable news source, but interesting rumors regardless.


So, we are basically looking at an Odyssey + with an Oculus logo on the front :wink: .


Maybe, although some of the report doesn’t make sense. Can you imagine Rift+Touch users with 3 sensor cameras then being told that ‘inside out’ tracking is how they upgrade?

Due to Samsung owning the panels manufacturing, I would guess it would be more like the original Odyssey rather than the Plus in specs rather than the anti-SDI and AMOLED screens.

The Oculus founder that left last week was complaining about a ‘race to the bottom’ so it might be the ‘Rift S’ is a price entry thing rather than specs, i.e. get it to $299 all-in with no sensors and different (cheaper Quest ones) hand controllers.


All those holes in their ceilings and walls…all that cable management…out the window…

They will burn Oculus HQ down if they go with inside out…haha…

PS - Sell stock in HDMI extension cables…


I don’t know, I kind of agree with the Biz side of Facebook on this one; now is not the time for a 2.0 headset, as many folks are still off put by the cost of the current gen ones, and the cost of a rig beefy enough to run them. I think the watered down ‘gimmicky’ wireless sets with built in electronics are a good stop gap measure for VR. Right now it’s a software game; the market needs to attract more developers, and those developers are more likely to jump in to the shallow end of the pool, where the investment (and by extension, risk) is smaller.

I hate to say all that, but I think the hateful truth of the matter is that VR needs a bit more ‘Fruit ninja VR’ that costs as much as a game console, and a bit less ‘PI Max 8K’ that requires the down payment on a car to get up and running. Otherwise I it’ll snuff out, and we’ll just all be flying around sadly staring at 8k screens knowing that this could all be better.


I think you are right @aggressorblue. I’m just hoping the future of sim VR is something that will still have a place regardless of the ‘VR consoles’ taking off or not. If they can do a $199 and have a Beat Sabre hit or something then it might really gain traction.

It’s like new CPU families, in that AMD and Intel aren’t making them for sims, but we can piggy back just fine off of a new i9 9900k coming out, even if it wasn’t built for our market.


Yeah…I can see those portable VR headsets being very popular at parties and stuff where people are playing Beat Saber and stuff like that. Whatever will expand the technology and user base is probably good. Us at the extreme end will just have to be a little patient and hope it trickles down to us…

It could get interesting with five or six people in a room with some seated VR playing some sort of murder mystery interactive thing. I could see how that would be very entertaining…


I anticipate there to be business applications also that will hopefully drive further high end development - there are already applications in real estate / architectural design where the client / buyer can walk around the proposed building and see the views, light and shadow etc.


There’s a lot of money in training and education as well for sure.

Also, I’ve also suspected it might take someone like Apple to ‘Invent VR’ in a couple of years and to drive the market like that. They make high-end devices fashionable for no logical reason, but they tend to nail the marketing and ergonomics better than most. When they come out with their AR / VR hybrid and a seamless (and expensive) experience then lots of people will take notice. It feels inevitable, in that we’re in the ‘Casio MP3’ player period before the iPod ‘invented’ portable music players and they sold tons of them. :wink:


It’s really not hard to imagine how the technology might explode. Something like Google glass with augmented reality capability. You are grocery shopping, pick up an item, look at the barcode on it, say something and the specs open a virtual window that gives you information about it (product reviews, calories, average price…etc…). Same with directions, or just about anything you look at a phone to do. Look at a building (Google - what is that?) and your VR glasses darken and you sort of still see the building in some synthetic way with some details about it.

Enabled with GPS of some sort…it would be kinda weird…imagine being out hiking, looking at a peak in the distance (Google - what mountain is that and how far away is it?) and again, the glasses display all that info. It is scary in a way, but I think some insane leaps forward are possible.

Watching a sporting event and seeing jersey names or statistics, the first down line drawn, the score. Information overload I’m sure.


Honestly, for someone like me, I’d rather see it act as a on-the-fly captioning device for the deaf. That’s a pretty obvious example of a good use of the tech, but I don’t see it mentioned much. Probably because auto translate still ain’t quite up to snuff.


If I am reading the “mood of the room” correctly, the Oculus founder departure + Quest announcement pushed quite a few Oculus users to other platforms. FaceBook will not get those people back anytime soon. Therefore there is no hurry. The market has bought them some breathing room. They cannot ignore the highend headset market without the risk that another device maker will parlay a highend success into a competitive consumer device. FPS and Battle Royale titles will eventually drive the high end market. Unlike flight/driving sims, theirs is a market too big to dismiss. And that will be good for us. KB/mouse will be dead in five years. I simply cannot imagine anyone being entertained by something so archaic when this beautiful other world exists that makes 2D feel like calling grandma on a crank telephone.


I seriously doubt that.
Reasoning behind that: I don’t see how prices for VR (and PCs that can run them) will be low enough in five years so more than 1-5% of gamers will use anything else except KB/mouse.


Sorry double post, my phone browser occasionally has a problem with the forums software.

To further expand on the above:
Price right now for a decent PC that can run VR smoothly is 2000 bucks (Euros or Dollar, small difference) and the VR device itself is another 500-1000 on top of that.
Even if you assume that those prices will half in the next few years (I doubt it, graphics cards for example get more expensive, not less), then you are at 1250+ bucks for a gaming PC.
One reason for popular games (Fortnite and PUBG, the stuff kids play these days) being pretty popular right now is that you can run them on fairly low level hardware. A 500 bucks PC will do.

And that’s ignoring the fact that there are people who cannot use VR properly because they get sick or the devices don’t fit on their heads, or… other stuff.


I also equate it to playing the Wii back in the day. Sometimes you just want to sit and play a game and not work up a sweat to do it.