Google's standalone headset may feature augmented, virtual reality

google vr ar headset spec cardboard daydream
Rumors and leaks have been going around about Google’s virtual reality projects — most notably a report from Recode that said the search giant reportedly killed off a VR headset project that would rival the likes of the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift. But that doesn’t mean we won’t be seeing a headset sometime soon.

It’s not exactly new information that Google is working on a mobile headset — the company said as much at its developer conference in May. It will be built for Daydream — an Android VR platform that offers high quality apps and content. The platform works best on phones and headsets with the proper hardware and it’s why Google released a reference guide to hardware manufacturers. We’ve seen a few devices become “Daydream-certified” already, like ZTE’s Axon 7.

Google’s upcoming Nexus devices will also be Daydream-ready. But more details have emerged about a headset that Google is working on, thanks to sources speaking to Engadget, and it reportedly “blurs the line” between virtual reality and augmented reality — meaning you’ll likely be able to use the device for both virtual and real-world experiences.

The Mountain View company has been assigning its employees to work on this high-end headset for the past few months, but the key point is this: Daydream isn’t Google’s long-term goal for VR and AR. That’s not to say it isn’t a high priority, but Engadget’s sources say that Google thinks of Daydream as a stepping stone “towards a grander hardware push.” It’s unclear if the headset Engadget’s sources discuss is the Daydream device we’re expecting to see from Google later this fall.

Regardless, the AR and VR headset will not require a computer or a phone to power it, which would be a first for a mainstream commercial product. It will have a screen and will offer more augmented reality features than current VR headsets can provide. There is no clear release date for this headset.

Google is already leading the augmented reality space with Tango, which saw its debut in the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro, and the company already has a solid foot in virtual reality thanks to its widely popular Cardboard — a cheap headset that brought VR to the masses.

We’ll have to see if we’ll see this blend of AR and VR in the headset coming this fall when Daydream launches, or if this device is one we’ll see later on when Google readies its greater hardware push.

Emerging Tech

The U.S. Army is building a giant VR battlefield to train soldiers virtually

Imagine if the U.S. Army was able to rehearse battlezone scenarios dozens, or even hundreds, or times before settling foot on actual terrain. Thanks to virtual reality, that's now a possibility.
Computing

Oculus shows off the Rift S, plans to phase out its original VR headset

Oculus plans to phase out its flagship Rift VR headset for its newly created Rift S. The Rift S made its debut this week at the 2019 Game Developers Conference and is expected to be released in spring 2019.
Gaming

Amazon drops a deal on SteelSeries Arctis 3 gaming headset for Nintendo Switch

Amazon is currently running a deal on the SteelSeries Arctis 3 gaming headset, which is compatible with Nintendo Switch as well as Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, mobile, and virtual reality.
Gaming

New Sony patent suggests a wireless PSVR headset could be on the way

Images and documents in the Japan Patent Office appear to suggest that Sony is planning a wireless version of the PlayStation VR headset. It isn't clear which system it will be used for.
Virtual Reality

Is the Vive Pro better than the original Vive? Our answer might surprise you

HTC Vive vs. Vive Pro, which comes out on top? That's the subject of our latest comparison, which looks at everything from tracking solutions, to controllers, and the brand new headset that could set a new standard for VR.
Computing

Samsung files a VR patent featuring a curved OLED display

Doubling down on its emphasis on curved displays, Samsung recently filed a design patent for a new virtual reality headset that could feature a curved OLED display, which would be an interesting development in VR.
Gaming

Bringing realism to VR is complex, but these developers found a way in holograms

Making virtual reality feel real is the hardest job of all VR developers. For Awake: Episode One, StartVR used volumetric recording, rather than motion capture, to bring its characters to life like never before.
Computing

HP’s high-resolution VR headset provides comfort and Windows Mixed Reality

HP's new VR headset reportedly offers an exceptionally high resolution, highlights comfort and runs on Windows Mixed Reality. HP hasn't officially announced the new headset, but here's a look at some of its features.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.
Virtual Reality

Getting into VR is spendy. Which headset is truly worth your hard-earned cash?

Virtual reality has finally gone mainstream, but how do you find the best VR headset for you? Check out a few of our favorites, whether you want the best of the best or a budget alternative for your mobile device.
Virtual Reality

HTC Vive Focus Plus makes it easier for developers to port PC content

HTC Vive has announced the Vive Focus Plus headset. The upgraded stand-alone headset makes use of "six degrees of freedom" support in controllers for a PC-like virtual reality experience.
Computing

Here’s how to watch Microsoft’s HoloLens 2 press conference

It is widely believed that Microsoft's WMC conference will be the stage for the unveiling of the next generation of its HoloLens mixed reality headset. We have the live stream right here.
Computing

Microsoft unveils $3,500 HoloLens 2 at MWC 2019. Here’s what you need to know

The HoloLens 2 is ripe for an announcement. Here's what Microsoft has revealed so far, what's likely in store for the next generation HoloLens, and everything that we know about this mixed reality headset.
Cars

Nissan designers use HaptX VR gloves to shape future cars

New car designs usually start out as clay before becoming metal, but designers are now swapping clay for pixels. Nissan is using virtual reality gloves from HaptX that give designers a tactile feel of virtual models.