Virtual reality is not a new concept – the idea has been circulating in the technology arena for some time, but recently the dream has started to become more real with advancements in tech enabling VR to smash through barriers.
From entry level access with devices like Google’s Cardboard requiring only a smartphone to enter the VR world, to the more sophisticated premium systems like the HTC Vive, virtual reality is now a mass market commodity, and the excitement in what VR will be able to do in the modern era has never been so great.
During 2016 an array of devices are expected to launch to cater for the VR demand – here we look 4 of the most popular and highly regarded systems available.
Since its early days as a concept on Kickstarter to being acquired by Facebook, the Oculus Rift has been one of the most exciting and eagerly anticipated VR systems around. With an asking price of around £500, a high spec PC will also be required to run the Rift so the overall system will not be cheap. However, the system comprises of a headset that’s loaded with sensors, a display for each eye and integrated headphones.
This system is powerful and capable of creating some incredible VR worlds, making it the most premium system in the VR category. The first units are expected to be launched in April but pre-orders mean if you order now you will be waiting until at least July.
The HTC Vive is similar to the Oculus Rift in the fact that a powerful PC is required to experience the full VR effect. This system is still in the development stage and will differ from other systems as you will be able to move around a room whilst the system maps your location and movement around the physical space, integrating this into your virtual space. Very cool!
The headset presents very slick visuals to your eyes by way of a range of integrated sensors, but there are no integrated headphones. The bespoke Vive hand controllers provided are mapped within the 3D space which offers plenty of versatility when it comes to control.
This system arriving in October 2016, differs from the previous 2 as it is driven by the PS4 console, and is more of an accessory to the PS4 rather than a fully fledged VR system. The biggest advantage to this is the price tag, which at £349.00 is a lot less than equivalent rivals, and also the fact that the console is less pricey than a high-end gaming PC keeps costs down further.
PlayStation VR uses the same technologies as the others, however. It tracks movement of your head and uses the PlayStation Camera, in combination with your regular PS4 controller, to present the VR experience, moving the visuals from your TV to your face. This is an extension of your PS4, which is likely to see it as an easy VR choice for many.
Samsung Gear VR
Samsung was one of the early movers on VR, launching the Gear VR headset, co-developed with Oculus, and designed to support a smartphone, rather than needing a connection to a PC or console.
The handsets slide neatly into the tray at the front and internal lenses split the display between your eyes offering a high resolution display and slick visuals. Certainly the new S7 and S7 Edge models are claimed to be the best handsets for the VR experience.
Gear VR is available for around £100, and there's an optional controller too, which you can get for about £70. However, you will need to make sure it's going to fit your chosen Samsung. We will soon be offering personalised skins for the Gear VR so you will be able to design personalised Samsung S7 cases and of course personalised Samsung S7 Edge cases and your Gear VR to match.
Here at Wrappz, we're always staying on top of developments in technology whether that's the latest mobile device or the newest advances in gaming.