Oculus Rift S Headset to be Revealed at GDC Subsequent Week


In accordance with a report by UploadVR, citing emails despatched from Fb to Oculus builders, the rumored Rift S headsets will probably be revealed subsequent week at GDC.

Rift S was first delivered to gentle in a TechCrunch report final 12 months in regards to the management shakeup at Oculus and purported shifting product plans. The report stated that Fb/Oculus had determined to cancel a bigger ‘Rift 2’ overhaul in favor of a extra modest product refresh referred to as the ‘Rift S’.

An UploadVR report this night cites an e-mail despatched from Fb to VR builders which “suggests ‘Rift S’ will probably be formally revealed at GDC 2019,” the annual Sport Builders Convention hosted subsequent week in San Francisco. Oculus is already confirmed as attending the occasion however hasn’t stated something in regards to the potential of a brand new headset being revealed. We’ve reached out to Oculus for remark.

Origin of the Rift S Rumors

Within the TechCrunch report final 12 months, citing “a supply conversant in the matter,” it was said that the Rift S would seemingly bump the decision of the headset and transfer to an inside-out monitoring system which might ditch the exterior sensors—which the headset wants to trace its place—in favor of on-board cameras which may do the identical job whereas simplifying setup and utilization of the headset. Oculus has already demonstrated its inside-out monitoring expertise, which it calls ‘Perception’, on its upcoming standalone VR headset, Quest.

Final month, UploadVR uncovered code within the Oculus software program referencing the Rift S explicitly. Rumors of the up to date headset have additional been stoked by spurious availability of inventory for unique Rift headset in current weeks, in addition to a quiet worth drop on the headset from $400 to $350 again in January.

Authentic Rift Going Robust Regardless of Age

Oculus Rift S Headset to be Revealed at GDC Subsequent Week 13Picture courtesy Oculus

The Rift is Oculus’ first, and thus far solely, PC VR headset. It was launched again in 2016, and sports activities a 1,080 × 1,200 decision and a ~100 diploma diagonal discipline of view. At launch, the headset was priced at $600 and included an Xbox One controller as the first enter system, with content material primarily designed for seated gameplay.

Oculus Rift S Headset to be Revealed at GDC Subsequent Week 14The Oculus Rift unique shipped with an Xbox One controller within the field for seated gameplay. | Picture by Highway to VR

It wouldn’t be till the top of 2016 that Oculus would launch the now customary ‘Contact’ movement controllers for $200, which have turn out to be the headset’s main enter system (with the Xbox One controller finally eliminated completely from the bundle) and pivoted the overwhelming majority of content material towards standing ‘front-facing’ gameplay with movement enter.

Oculus Rift S Headset to be Revealed at GDC Subsequent Week 15The Rift helps ‘room-scale’ monitoring, however requires an optionally available third sensor and requires routing a USB cable from the far nook of the playspace again to the host PC.

Whereas the default setup for the 2 included sensors provides front-facing gameplay, the system helps standing 360 gameplay with opposing sensors, or full ‘room-scale’ gameplay with an optionally available third sensor positioned in a nook of the playspace. Because the sensors have to plug into the host PC, including a 3rd sensor for a bigger playspace generally is a ache as a result of it means working a cable throughout the room. Inside-out monitoring— which does away with exterior sensors in favor of cameras mounted on the headset itself—would make room-scale monitoring the default, whereas simplifying the setup and utilization.

Microsoft and its hardware companions have been the primary to debut shopper PC VR headsets that includes inside-out monitoring again on the finish of 2017, with many agreeing in regards to the improved ease of use; in comparison with headsets with exterior monitoring gear, the Home windows VR headsets merely plug into the PC from a single tether and are prepared for room-scale monitoring. Nonetheless, controller monitoring is made harder with inside-out monitoring as a result of gamers can extra simply block the on-headset cameras from seeing the controllers. This will pose challenges for sure video games which ask the participant to maneuver their arms near their physique (or in some instances behind their again or over their shoulder).

Regardless of its age and lack of successor three years later, the Rift is among the many main shopper VR headsets general, and the most well-liked headset in use on Steam. Oculus has steadily reduce costs on the Rift from the preliminary $800 worth level (for the headset and Contact controllers) all the best way all the way down to the $350 as of January, 2019. Whereas the Rift’s industrial design has held up properly, three years on there are a handful of headsets providing larger resolutions and wider fields of view.

Rift S Expectations

Oculus Rift S Headset to be Revealed at GDC Subsequent Week 16Pictured: Oculus Quest. Rift S is anticipated to look much like Quest, with cameras on headset for inside-out monitoring, and ‘reversed’ Contact controllers which higher place the hidden IR LEDs to be seen by the headset’s on-board cameras. | Picture courtesy Oculus

The Rift S isn’t anticipated to be a sequel to unique Rift as a lot as a refresh. Except for the inside-out ‘Perception’ monitoring, it’s anticipated that the headset’s decision will probably be bumped and that newer optics will probably be used, presumably the identical (or comparable) as these utilized in Oculus Go or Quest, which the corporate has referred to as their “greatest ever.”

Within the decision division, it appears seemingly that the Rift S will wind up with the identical show as Quest (1,600 × 1,440), which might be a pleasant step up, and put the headset on par with the Vive Professional and Samsung Odyssey when it comes to decision. Alternatively, Oculus may attempt to get forward of the competitors by adopting even high-res shows, like the two,160 × 2,160 panels seen within the upcoming HP ‘Copper’ headset, although this might imply a transfer from OLED to LCD; thus far Oculus and others have principally chosen OLED shows for higher-end headsets, although there stay professionals and cons to think about on the subject of LCD.

What isn’t anticipated to alter (at the very least not by a lot) is the headset’s ~100 diploma discipline of view. Whereas Oculus itself has proven off the ‘Half Dome’ prototype headset with a 140 diploma discipline of view, increasing the sphere of view would require extra vital adjustments to the headset’s optics and shows, seemingly being out of scope for a ‘Rift S’ refresh. Pimax is already providing an ultra-wide FOV VR headset, however different shopper headsets stay largely within the ~100 FOV class. No enchancment in discipline of view may depart many early adopters wanting, as decision and FOV are among the many most vocally requested enhancements.

Eye-tracking is one other function which is up within the air for Rift S. On one hand, eye-tracking is a game-changing expertise that’s anticipated to play an enormous function in the way forward for VR—and having eye-tracking in an actual product may present Oculus with real-world knowledge to additional hone the tech—however however the corporate may withhold eye-tracking till it will possibly present an entire bundle with varifocal shows, as seen in Half Dome.

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GDC 2019 is being held subsequent week from March 18th to 22nd in San Francisco, CA. Highway to VR will probably be on the bottom to deliver you a very powerful information from the occasion. Keep tuned.