Quark VR has released a video teaser showcasing its prototype for a wireless HTC Vive virtual reality headset. The short clip shows the company’s co-founder and CEO, Krasi Nikolov, using the headset without being tethered to a computer.
The company’s plans to offer a method of using the Vive headset without wires were first revealed in September 2016, when it was confirmed that Quark was collaborating with Valve. At the time, the team pledged to show a working prototype before the end of the year — but this teaser seems to suggest that a full reveal is inbound.
In the teaser, the Vive headset is connected to a single-board computer and an accompanying battery pack, which are attached to a belt around the waist for the wearer’s convenience. Based on the current prototype, this set-up allows for over two hours of gameplay on a single charge.
Quark’s wireless VR solution works by streaming content from the user’s PC to the single-board computer on their person. As a result, it’s possible to stream the same experience to multiple headsets, which could prove to have applications outside of personal usage.
VR hardware is still prohibitively expensive for many users, so there are already various different attempts to offer access to VR content in a public setting — and it’s easy to see how Quark’s technology could benefit such an enterprise. Several VR arcades are apparently already testing out the software for themselves.
However, Quark is promising functionality that is even more compelling for its next update, as it will apparently demonstrate wireless multiplayer using different headsets. While the Oculus Rift isn’t mentioned by name, it seems to be a likely candidate for the company’s research. If Quark’s software is as “hardware agnostic” as it’s claimed to be, this could be a very useful project for the VR industry at large.