Facebook's Zuckerberg talks promise of VR at Oculus conference

Oculus Go: The $200 Standalone Headset VR Needs

Facebook held its fourth annual Oculus Connect event in San Jose, showcasing a new mobile headset, teasing its next evolution of Oculus Rift and unveiling new updates to Oculus Home and more. That seems to indicate the Oculus Go is running on some flavor of Android, but that's unconfirmed right now.

Oculus Rift and Touch: The bundled price of Oculus' top-end Rift VR headset and Touch controllers has been set permanently at $399, which had been a promotional price for six weeks this summer. It also supports pulling 2D windows into virtual reality, where you can pin them into the VR experience. Also, this isn't simply just a vessel for your smartphones like Samsung's Gear VR or Zeiss VR One Plus; this is a unit that can work on its own.

At only $199, Zuckerberg called it "the most accessible VR headset yet".

This followed Zuckerberg's announcement that Oculus wants to get one billion people using its virtual reality products.

Despite the lower price, the Go has a higher resolution display than the Rift.

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The real kicker in the Go is it will act as a standalone unit. Gear VR and Oculus Go apps will be binary compatible, too, so that there'll be a healthy number of apps and other VR content available from the get-go. Hugo Barra, Facebook's VP of VR, said that it's "hands-down the easiest way for developers to get involved with VR".

The new headset is made of a new breathable cloth, for improved comfort, and the Go can be used with glasses.

Where my eyes turn to is the Project Santa Cruz headset, which will undoubtedly be more expensive than Go and maybe even Rift, but looks to offer an analogous experience to Rift, without a tether.

Within the last few months, a range of companies have committed to releasing standalone devices, including HTC and Lenovo, with Google's support, HP, Dell and Acer, with Microsoft's support; and Samsung, which is launching a $500 standalone "mixed reality" (think virtual objects interacting with the real world) headset in November.

Earlier this week, Mark Zuckerberg caught some flak for leading us on a virtual reality (VR) tour of the destruction Maria wrought on Puerto Rico.

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