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

According to a new report, Google plans on releasing a new virtual reality headset later this year that will compete with Samsung's Gear VR.

Published onFebruary 7, 2016

google cardboard io 2015 aa (9 of 9)

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 Virtual Reality, and what role will Android play?

[related_videos align=”left” type=”custom” videos=”644610,644697,613270,666155″]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.

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