Published: Thu, May 18, 2017
Sci-tech | By Jose Becker

HTC Vive Announces Standalone Daydream-Powered VR Headset

Vice president of virtual reality at Google Clay Bavor announced that the company is working on standalone Google Daydream VR headsets during the Google I/O event in San Francisco today.

Google's Daydream VR platform is breaking free from its phone-based confines with the standalone headsets, Google has revealed. Standalone headsets that are independent of additional components and free of wires are the next evolution of VR hardware, as they're more fit for a mass-market audience. Qualcomm is working on a "reference design" for the generalized platform, while HTC and Lenovo will have the first consumer units ready for later in 2017. The idea is that the headset will be able to run straight out of the box, making VR more accessible for a mass market.

HTC has had a massive week with the launch of their new U11 flagship phone, but they're not stopping there.

. This is apparently a form of the inside-out tracking used by Microsoft's HoloLens, which does not depend on external sensors to position the headset in the real world.

But Google's new devices won't require any of that.

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The current, phone-supporting version of Google Daydream costs $80.

Finally, Google demoed new additions to their educational Expeditions VR experiences, this time leveraging augmented reality to create classroom presentations where all sorts of experiments happen in front of students' eyes, through their device.

While this isn't a HTC Vive 2 announcement, it's a glimpse of what we could expect to see with rumors of a wireless PC-powered headset doing the rounds. Samsung are one of the world's most popular smartphone manufacturers, especially in the west and are the creators of one of the Google Daydream's main competitors with the Samsung Gear VR.

Google will not be building these headsets itself.

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