Facebook's Oculus Tries To Find 'Sweet Spot' with New VR Headset

Todd Singleton
October 14, 2017

Facebook has unveiled its first standalone virtual reality headset, Oculus Go, ushering in what it described as a "totally new phase of VR hardware".

During Oculus Connect 4, a new price drop was announced putting the Oculus Rift headset bundle at $399 and cutting the price down by $100, as the second price cut for the headset since earlier this year.

This week, Facebook confirmed that the Oculus Go, a new, standalone VR headset, was on its way in early 2018. Putting VR technology in the hands of more businesses is a crucial step to growing the market, and Oculus wants to make the process easier with Oculus for Business.

The company is developing software known as Facebook Spaces that allows friends to meet in virtual rooms, and it said it will soon integrate live video.

In terms of specifications, the headset features high-resolution fast-switch LCD screen for visual clarity and reducing "screen door effect" (SDE).

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At the time of writing, Oculus hasn't announced when the Oculus Go will hit United Kingdom shores. It doesn't boast full motion tracking like the Oculus Touch controllers, but instead offers basic motion tracking - and we don't think this is only to keep costs down. Its price (199 dollars-Atlantic) has not yet been set for Europe.

Oculus has been trying to find a "sweet spot" when it comes to the price and quality of a virtual reality headset. The Oculus Go will arrive with lenses the same as Oculus Rift's wide field-of-view. However, Oculus Go eliminates the need of separate computer for its operation.

The company is positioning this as a VR experience for people on a budget and has an aim to reach as well as bring more than 1 billion people to the Virtual reality world. There is also a built-in display, processor, web connectivity, and speakers.

Different from the old VR system, the new Oculus Go doesn't need to be powered by a phone or any other type of computer.

Facebook designed the Oculus Go with breathable fabrics and will allow users to modify the device's straps. However, there's also a 3.5mm headphone jack for private listening, or for when you're getting on your housemates' nerves.

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