Oculus’ ‘Half Dome’ Uses Mechanised Lenses to Improve VR Visualisation

Oculus' prototype means you can view virtual items even closer up in VR.

It’s the second day of the Facebook Developers Conference (F8) 2018 and if you thought that all the virtual reality (VR) news was over then think again, with Oculus detailing some of the technology its been working on. Some of this has been to do with the visualisation of VR and the comfort felt by players, namely being able to focus on different objects at different distances which has been achieved via a varifocal mechanism called Half Dome.

Oculus Half Dome

Currently all VR headsets have a fixed focal plane, so when a users eye focuses on what’s displayed at a reasonable distance it’s in focus. Most developers work on a principle of around two meters away from a player, so when items are brought much closer they become blurred and unreadable.

With Oculus Half Dome the screens can move to correct this, improving both visual comfort, clarity and up close sharpness. Further benefits also include a wider field of view (FoV), increased from Oculus Rift’s 110 degrees to 140 degrees. And Oculus has managed to fit all of this mechanism inside the Oculus Rift form factor without unnecessary weight addition.


Maria Fernandez Guajardo, Head of Product Management, at Oculus notes in the F8 keynote that even with this moving mechanism strapped to your face no noise or vibrations can be felt by the user.

This is very much still in early development by the looks of it but showcases some of the promising work Oculus is doing to advance VR hardware development. As day 2 of F8 continues VRFocus will bring you further updates from the conference.

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