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Varjo Announces “20|20”: a Human Eye-Resolution Headset Display

Varjo Technologies, a Finnish company that’s recently emerged from stealth, has revealed what its been working on, a new display for virtual reality (VR) headsets with a claimed resolution the same as the human eye. It’s been dubbed “20|20”.

Current headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, whilst high-quality, can suffer from a ‘screen-door’ effect because of the distance of the display from the eye’s – this was more pronounced in earlier models like the Oculus DK1/DK2. The resolutions equate to around 1.2 MP says Varjo, while its new display has a resolution of 70 MP creating far greater clarity to improve immersive experiences, whilst keeping the same 100-degree field of view (FOV).

Varjo 4K cinemascope stills 3

Codenamed “20|20” after perfect vision, the company’s prototype is based on technology created by a team of optical scientists, creatives and developers who previously worked at top tech firms like Microsoft, Nokia, Intel, Nvidia and Rovio.

Even with the announcement Varjo has kept further details on the new display fairly quiet, simply it combines a context display, focus display, optical combiner and gaze tracker. It also uses foveated eye-tracking, a process VRFocus has covered before to help reduce processing requirements, which is possibly why the company claims such a high MP.

“Varjo’s patented display innovation pushes VR technology 10 years ahead of the current state of-the-art, where people can experience unprecedented resolution of VR and AR content limited only by the perception of the human eye itself,” said Urho Konttori, CEO and founder of Varjo Technologies in a statement. “This technology, along with Varjo VST, jump-starts the immersive computing age overnight – VR is no longer a curiosity, but now can be a professional tool for all industries.”

It will being shipping: “Varjo-branded products specifically for professional users and applications starting in late Q4, 2017,” so check back with VRFocus as further details emerge.

Comparative matrix Effective resolution Field of view
Varjo 20|20 70 MP 100°
Oculus, Vive 1.2 MP 100°
VR in 5 years * 16 MP 140°
HoloLens 1 MP 32°
ODG R9 2 MP 50°
Meta II 1.8 MP 100°
* Prediction 2016 by Oculus Chief Scientist Michael Abrash at Oculus Connect 3