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Google I/O 2017: Google Releases Standalone VR Headset

19 May 2017

However, those users who don't want to insert a device in a Daydream VR headset, or connect a headset to a PC to experience VR, will be able to buy standalone VR headsets.

Having all the hardware shifted inside the headsets will particularly benefit the manufacturers in improving its performance.

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Google's VR headset inside-out positional tracking means that, unlike the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, Google's WorldSense VR headsets can operate without external sensor trackers, confirming rumors leading up to Wednesday's reveal. In fact previous year it was rumored that Google could be throwing their hat into the ring with a dedicated VR headset similar to that of the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and the Sony PlayStation VR. All of the necessary computer pieces will be housed within the headset, from the main processors to graphics hardware, storage, and wireless support. They've also described the new device as a "lightweight" way to experience standalone VR.

Evidence that Google may be working on a standalone VR headset also includes its apps. This is enabled by sensors on the outside of the device, aiming to help you feel like you're actually in the virtual world.

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Meanwhile, HTC and Lenovo have both announced they'll be working with Google to produce a number of phone-less dedicated VR headsets.

The announcement was made at Google's annual developer conference I/O.

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"These devices build on what's already great about smartphone VR, and they make the whole experience even easier and more comfortable", says Google. "We're thrilled that headsets will begin to hit shelves later this year". "Vive will be making a stand-alone VR product for the Google Daydream Platform", an HTC representative said. Only one standalone headset has been created so far. In mobile VR, the smartphone is directly attached to the headset. HTC now sells its own VR headset, the Vive, which requires a powerful computer to operate.