At yesterday’s Oculus Connect 5, Mark Zuckerberg announced the completion of Oculus’ first generation Oculus VR headset line with a new all-in-one device. The company introduced the Oculus Quest VR gaming headset; ready to come out spring next year at a launch price of $399. Quest is, in Zuckerberg’s words the ‘all-in-one VR experience that we have been waiting for’.
This year’s Oculus Connect 5 has started with flying colors. The rumors of new Oculus device proved truer than anyone had hoped for. The device will be the sublimation of everything Facebook learned about VR gaming thus far. Oculus Quest VR will be a wireless, smartphone-less, PC-less gaming headset, with 6 degrees of freedom (6DOF) to offer its users. Quest sports no external sensors and puts touch controllers under spotlights. It is very much the VR gaming as we wanted it in the first place.
But we had to get there. Facebook’s path has been paved by Oculus Go which remains the first choice for many as far as affordable VR headsets go. Oculus Rift is the preferred option for powerful PC users to realize their full potential, offering stellar VR image and performance. Combining the best of both worlds, only without PCs or any other additional devices, Oculus Quest VR gaming headset will be the Facebook’s definitive market option. It gives wireless, standalone Rift-like performance and 64GB at the price of $399 at the launch. The launch, spring 2019 if it all goes well, will also be followed by 50 titles already lined up.
The image quality with Oculus Quest is a blend of optical and mechanical tweaks upgraded from the previous iterations. The resolution is still on the Go-level, 1600×1440 per each eye, while the lens space adjustment aims to be the definitive option for maximum visual comfort. Facebook boats of improving the sound too, now offering deeper bass and overall audio enhancement.
Controllers have received a slight upgrade too. More than a slight in fact. While VR gaming industry has gotten used to thumbsticks and sensors, with Touch technology Oculus Quest VR device turns your hands into controllers. Touch controllers promise the greater and more natural VR world interactivity. And being wireless, it means that gamers can walk, as well as throw or slash their hands around the room for an arena like, 4, 000 square feet distance.
The greater VR mobility is made possible by Facebook’s new Oculus Insight technology. Without using any external sensors, the technology rests on inside-out tracking made possible by computer vision algorithms and ultra-wide sensors. Immersion and mobility go hand in hand and Oculus Insight rises to the challenge. And should you happen to immerse more than advisable and wander off a little, there is a Guardian to keep things safe.
‘This is it’, Zuckerberg triumphantly announced to an ‘oh yeah’ cheering crowd at Oculus Connect 5 event. Oculus Quest VR gaming headset will close the first chapter in Facebook’s attempt to provide the best-in-class VR device. Great on paper, let’s hope Oculus Quest sets the minimum bar for Virtual Reality headsets in 2019.