Google unveils standalone VR headsets with Daydream

According to an exclusive by Variety, Google could be set to launch a new standalone virtual reality device at the upcoming Google I/O 2017 developers conference. Google is working on standalone headsets with Lenovo Group Ltd. and HTC Corp., the company said. Google and Qualcomm collaborated to create a standalone Daydream HMD reference design, with all the goodies built into the headset itself. That means, by the time they launch, there should already be a gamut of applications already available.

Google's Daydream VR platform is breaking free from its phone-based confines with the standalone headsets, Google has revealed. "We're thrilled that headsets will begin to hit shelves later this year". We don't know if it will be Daydream branded or not; Daydream being Google's Android-based VR project. The company owns the Tiltbrush, Google Earth and Job Simulator apps.

It's a bold move for Samsung, whose current mobile headset, the Gear VR, is powered by Facebook-owned Oculus.

Details are scarce at this stage in terms of pricing, exact release date, or worldwide availability, but we'll bring you more information from Google's I/O event as we get it. This is enabled by sensors on the outside of the device, aiming to help you feel like you're actually in the virtual world.

With a name like WorldSense, Google seems to be implying that the tracking system will be able to work at a huge scale, without pre-scanning or calibration.

Also showcased was the Visual Positioning System, a sensing technology that remembers the position of things indoors and works in conjunction with the Google Maps.

  • Carolyn Briggs