Google reportedly releasing a rival to Samsung’s Gear VR later this year

by: Jimmy WestenbergFebruary 7, 2016
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It’s no secret that Google is getting serious about VR. The company just recently created a new virtual reality division that would see Google VP Clay Bavor at the helm, and there has also been a recent push to get VR just about everywhere you look. Now it looks like Google is planning on releasing its own VR headset, at least if a recent report from The Financial Times proves true.

This new headset will be a more expensive successor to Cardboard, and will supposedly come with better sensors, lenses and a solid plastic casing, according to the report. The headset, which will launch later this year, will be a rival to Samsung’s Gear VR, where the user’s smartphone provides most of the power for the unit. As of now, Google Cardboard relies solely on sensors built into smartphones to detect the position of a user’s head, while this new Google headset will come with additional motion sensors that will make the VR experience much smoother.

what-is-vr-video-thumbSee also: What is Virtual Reality, and what role will Android play?3

The big news here isn’t the headset, though, it’s that Google will reportedly reveal its new Android VR technology as well. Android VR will bring VR compatibility directly to the Android operating system, which would allow developers to more easily write VR apps as well as greatly reduce latency.

According to the report, Google is likely to take a similar approach to the new headset and Android VR platform as it does with its Nexus devices. The flagship hardware will be able to show off the latest capabilities for the platform, while developers will be able to take advantage of the software to create their own VR products.

So when will be able to see this new headset for ourselves? Google hasn’t commented on these software or hardware rumors as of yet, but it’s not too farfetched to think we could see a preview of the technology at Google I/O 2016 in May. What are your thoughts? Are you excited to see virtual reality expand into Android, or are you not sold yet? Be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below.

best google cardboard apps and vr appsNext: 7 best Google Cardboard VR apps and games27
  • Wezi427

    I hope that this one isn’t made of cardboard.

    • Android Developer

      why?

      • Wezi427

        I want something that’s sturdy.

        • Android Developer

          If it’s as cheap as the previous one, why not?

          • Wezi427

            Like I said I want something that’s sturdy, cardboard isn’t as sturdy as plastic. The cardboard is a nice cheap way of getting into VR, but I don’t mind spending extra money for something that will hold up a bit better than cardboard. I like cheap, but I prefer quality and durability. Does that suffice?

          • balcobomber25

            There are a number of third party versions of Google Cardboard made from plastic such as the ColorCross. There is also a foam version from I AM Cardboard.

          • Wezi427

            Thanks

          • balcobomber25

            They won’t allow me to post the links but if you search for Google Cardboard Alternatives you should be able to find them, you can get plastic ones for around $25.

  • AbbyZFresh

    Just as when Samsung finally has something to themselves that has nothing to do with Google. Google tries to one up them.

    • Android Developer

      competition is good.

    • John Doe

      Samsung never had this tech to themselves … there are lots of other players in this field, including HTC, Oculus Rift (also working with Samsung), Microsoft, Sony, etc

    • Toss3

      Google already has the cardboard VR thing and would just need an improved version with sensors that would be compatible with the current cardboard apps to have a decent competitor to the Gear VR. The Gear VR would still be the best version for anyone that actually enjoys high-quality VR apps, but it wouldn’t take long for Google to gain the upper hand.

    • balcobomber25

      Guess you never heard of Occulus or Hololens…..

  • Mista_Mr

    Google might have an edge here especially if it can be used by larger scope of phones compared to samsung which is only can be used by only a few samsung phones.