VR Headsets to see Mass Adoption of WiGig for Wireless Solution

A new report from ABI Research suggests that 84% of tethered VR devices will rely on WiGig wireless tethers by 2022.

Virtual reality (VR) has been steadily growing over the past few years, with the consumer head-mounted displays (HMDs) becoming available and new technologies pushing the boundaries of the experiences coming to the medium. However, one of the major hurdles to mainstream adoption remains the cables high-end devices have connected to either a PC or PlayStation 4 console. This may well change soon thanks to the likes of TPCast and DisplayLink, and a new report suggests that future HMDs will likely adopt WiGig technology for wireless narrowcast.

HTC Vive TPCAST

Wireless connectivity is increasingly important for VR users to have better experience, and ABI Research forecasts that almost 84% of tethered VR HMDs will have wireless connectivity using WiGig in 2022. A wired connection between the HMD and PC’s or consoles can restrict the freedom of movement for users, and while mobile and standalone devices run without the need of a cable connection, processing power is limited compared to tethered VR devices. In addition to TPCast and DisplayLink, chipset developers such as Intel, Qualcomm and Peraso are working together with hardware manufacturers to add wireless connectivity using WiGig in tethered VR devices.

Development of Cloud VR applications are expected to be another driver of wireless connectivity in VR HMDs, with the recent announcement of HTC partnering with Dalian Television and Beijing Cyber Cloud to test cloud VR service highlighting a potential future. Much like Cloudgine’s physics engine technology, rendering is done in cloud servers which allows users to access VR applications from anywhere without the requirement of a high-end PC.

“A high data rate and low latency connectivity are required for Cloud VR applications. WiGig which can provide up to 7 Gbps connectivity will play important role to support high bandwidth applications for indoor use,” stated Khin Sandi Lynn, industry analyst at ABI Research. “High capacity, low latency 5G networks will be essential for deployment of Cloud VR applications for mobile and standalone VR devices.”

ABI Research forecasts that 5G connectivity will be available in VR HMD starting from 2020 and over 2.6 million VR HMDs will support 5G connectivity in 2022. These findings are from ABI Research’s Connectivity in VR report.

Of course, the standalone HMDs in question are Oculus VR’s Santa Cruz, expected to launch late in 2018, and Google & Vive’s forthcoming device currently believed to be known as ‘HTC Vive Focus’. This collaboration was originally stated to be releasing in 2017 at Google I/O back in May of this year, however there has been little information concerning the HMD since. VRFocus will of course keep you updated with any further details on Santa Cruz, the HTC Vive Focus and other wireless VR HMD technologies.

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