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In Brief: Samsung Collaborating with Oculus for VR Headset

By Norman Chan

Which would use Samsung smartphones as the hardware and display.

We've actually heard this rumor independently before, so I have reason to believe it's true. Engadget is reporting that Samsung has been working with Facebook and Oculus to develop its own VR headset hardware, using Oculus as the software platform to render and display VR-optimized content. The difference between this headset and the Oculus Rift's eventual consumer release would be that Samsung's device would be a caddy for Samsung smartphones, which would act as the display and electronics powering VR. The accessory would basically be goggles with Oculus-approved optics. That would reduce the cost of such a headset, and also make it work independently of external computing hardware. On the downside, that limits the rendering capabilities of the VR experience--think smartphone graphics--and putting a lot of the bulk and weight in the front of the device. (The Galaxy S5 weighs 145g). The design of the headset would have to support that kind of weight distribution to be comfortable to be worn, either with counterweights in the back (maybe battery?) or a flip-down visor system that Sony's Morpheus prototype uses. Engadget says that this will be a media-centric device, so it's not competing directly with Oculus' own hardware. As long as it gets Oculus access to Samsung's next-generation high-density displays, we're cool with experiments like this that'll help bring VR to the masses.