IFA 2014: Samsung teams with Oculus for Gear VR headset

IFA 2014: Samsung teams with Oculus for Gear VR headsetWhen we think of wearables here on Mobot, it’s largely smartwatches that spring to mind – the likes of the Samsung Gear S, Asus ZenWatch, Motorola Moto 360, and the still-unofficial-but-much-discussed Apple iWatch.

The other prong – or one of the other prongs – is stuff you put on your noggin, and as expected, Samsung has dished plenty of delicious detail on the Gear VR virtual reality headset at IFA 2014 in Berlin.

Interestingly, while the Samsung Gear VR naturally goes head-to-head (pun intended) with the other big names in virtual reality, most notably the Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus, the South Koreans have actually teamed with the former - Facebook-owned Oculus - for the software side of things.

While the Oculus Rift requires a PC and Sony’s Project Morpheus demands a PS4, the Samsung Gear VR asks users to supply a Galaxy Note 4 or Galaxy Note Edge. Incidentally, some lunatic on Mobot wrote about both of those earlier this afternoon.

But back to the device in question, the Samsung Gear VR. “What does it actually do?” is the obvious starting point (he says, 200 words in), and the answer – in marketing terms, at least – is that it provides “an immersive new dimension of mobile life”. Zuh?

In layman’s terms, you can do cool stuff like wander around Tony Stark’s lab in the Avengers Tower (exclusive to the Samsung Gear VR, indeed), and enjoy 360-degree video content. The other obvious implication here is for gaming, which means I’ll be provided with one for “business purposes” – right, Emma? Emma?

Getting technical again for a moment, Samsung Gear VR specs include a 96-degree field of view, “motion to photon latency” of less than 20ms, and “interpupillary distance coverage” of 55-71mm.

The Samsung Galaxy VR’s release date is vaguely specified as “this year”, and it’ll be available “selectively by carriers”. Needless to say, there’s no specific word on price just yet, either.

For more on the Samsung Gear VR, and indeed wearables in general, head over to Mobot's sister site Wareable. They're in Berlin, eating bratwurst and playing with wearables as we speak.

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