It was just over a month ago now that reports of a Samung-made virtual reality (VR) headset surfaced. Originally thought to be designed to be competing with the Project Morpheus and Oculus Rift headsets, it was later suggested that Samsung was in fact working with the latter’s Oculus VR to create a wireless, Android-based device. Now a new leak has seemingly confirmed the device, its name, an intended reveal date and even a supposed first picture of the kit, which can be seen below.
According to Sammobile, Samsung’s device is named Gear VR and is set to be revealed at the IFA 2014 consumer electronics show in Berlin, Germany between 5th – 10th September 2014. Staying in line with earlier reports, it is suggested that Gear VR uses a Samsung Galaxy smartphone as its display, connecting to the headset via USB 3.0. The phone’s accelerometer, gyroscope and processor are then used to replicate head tracking, as seen with other smartphone-based head mounted displays (HMD) such as the Altergaze and Durovis Dive.
In terms of design, Gear VR reportedly sports an elastic head band to hold the kit in place with padded cushions on either side of the device for comfort. Apparently the kit also includes a see-through button which allows users to look at the real world using the Galaxy’s rear-facing camera so that they need not remove the device regularly. An on-board touchpad also allows for user interface (UI) navigation. Furthermore, the report again suggests that Oculus VR is developing the software for Gear VR, with the kit receiving a dedicated store an apps such as 360 Player, Theatre and Gallery.
The picture below seems to be a concept render more than anything else. If true then this puts the reveal of the device ahead of the Oculus Connect event, which takes place on 19th – 20th September 2014. Is Samsung really preparing to enter the VR industry? VRFocus will continue to follow the company’s developments, reporting back with any more news about Gear VR.