Virtual reality provides a wealth of new opportunities for gaming, film, and social networking, but one of its main drawbacks is that the headsets must be tethered to either a PC or a phone. High-powered headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive require a bulky cord running to a powerful PC, while the Samsung Gear VR needs a smartphone to work. However, Oculus and its parent company Facebook are reportedly working on a solution to that problem: a $200 wireless, standalone headset.
As reported by Bloomberg, the headset is meant to be a cheaper alternative to the high-end headsets. Facebook intends to bridge the gap between the budget Gear VR and the more expensive Rift; the new headset will need neither phone nor PC.
It’s currently codenamed “Pacific” and has a similar design to the Rift. It will be lighter than the Gear VR and is meant to be highly portable. The report states that it’ll be controlled with a wireless remote, and it’ll be geared toward playing games, watching movies, and social networking. Oculus is making it more powerful than the Gear VR, but the Rift will still be the only headset with position tracking.
Facebook is reportedly targeting 2018 for release, although it has refused to say anything official about the headset at this time. You can read the whole report here. In other Oculus news, the company dropped the price of the Rift for a limited time, and now you can pick up the headset and a bunch of games for just $400.