Despite having been talked about for decades, virtual reality is still in its infancy. The new world of VR has been available to consumers for just a few years. And with its increasing popularity, more options for virtual reality enthusiasts are becoming available every year.
Tethered headsets such as Facebook’s Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR are still the most powerful virtual reality solutions.
As more wireless virtual reality headsets become available, entry to VR is becoming less cost-prohibitive. The Oculus Go and the Samsung Gear VR helped to pioneer the way for wireless VR headsets. However, while offering shows, movies, and simple games in virtual reality, they still cannot compare to their tethered cousins.
This all looks set to change in 2019, as the Oculus Quest will provide the first true wireless VR experience.
What Is the Oculus Quest?
The Oculus Quest will be the first all-in-one VR gaming system. As a result, the headset will have its own on-board display, CPU, GPU, memory, and storage. The Quest includes the VR headset and two wireless controllers, and therefore Oculus Quest operates independently of a PC or console. Therefore, the system will be the first wireless VR headset that can offer experiences commensurate to the tethered Oculus Rift.
The Oculus Quest will appeal to people who want a quality VR experience but may not own a PlayStation 4 or gaming PC. Furthermore, the Oculus Quest will be very portable and user friendly. As a result, it will most likely be popular among kids, travelers, and party goers.
The Oculus Quest is expected to launch and release in 2019 for around $400.
What Are the Oculus Quest’s Specs?
The Oculus Quest’s dual OLED displays offer a resolution of 1,600 x 1,440 per eye operating at 72Hz.
The Oculus Quest will feature the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor with its own on-board graphics chip. There are already a number of phones powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon processors, including the Samsung Galaxy S9, Xperia XZ2, and the LG G7 ThinQ.
The processor is capable of powering a 4K resolution at 120 frames per second for VR headsets. However, the Oculus Quest’s processor still will not be able to compare to its tethered counterparts’ computing power. Wired VR headsets use the computing power of a PC or console. And wireless device cannot yet offer comparable power.
The Oculus Quest will offer 64GB of storage. In regards to battery life, the Oculus Quest will offer between three to fours hours of use between charges. This battery life is similar to what the Oculus Go offers. Since the Oculus Quest will be a more powerful headset than the Oculus Go, a larger battery is expected.
In regards to the Oculus Quest’s controllers, they should prove to be similar to the Oculus Rift’s Touch controllers.
Retailing for $100 when purchased solo, the Oculus Touch VR controllers are some of the most advanced VR controllers currently available. The Quest’s controllers will be wireless and resemble a modified version of the Touch Controllers. Otherwise, users can expect no major changes to the controllers.
Will the Oculus Quest Have Room-Scale Tracking?
Yes! The Oculus Quest will be the first wireless VR headset to offer room-scale tracking. Room-scale tracking allows a person not only to move their head, but to walk around a room while playing VR games. As a result, this creates a much more immersive experience for the user.
Tethered headsets such as the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift use sensors, or as HTC calls them, “base stations,” to achieve room scale tracking. These Bluetooth sensors are mounted in the corners of the room near the ceiling or on tall stands. As a result, the headset offers room-scale experiences.
In regards to the Oculus Quest, four room-scale tracking sensors are built directly into the four corners of the headset. There will be no additional sensors. As a result, room-scale experiences will be easy to achieve with the Oculus Quest. The sensors built into the headset are very precise.
At Oculus Connect 2018, Facebook demonstrated the accuracy of the sensors. Several people enjoyed what Oculus dubbed, “arenascale” tracking when Oculus Quest users tested the headsets’ tracking abilities in a tennis court. Therefore, it is highly possible that the Oculus Quest’s tracking abilities will supersede those of the Rift.
What Games Can I Play on the Oculus Quest?
Currently, the Oculus Quest is expected to launch with a library of around 50 games. Currently, there is a wide range of available games in genres ranging from fantasy to horror.
Perhaps the most anticipated game for the Oculus Quest as of now is Vader Immortal Episode I: A Star Wars VR Series. This is bound to be a more immersive offering than the Star Wars Jedi Challenge powered by Lenovo VR.
Other anticipated games include Moss, Stormland, Covert, and Dead and Buried VR. Furthermore, since the Oculus Quest and Rift have similar processing abilities, some Rift games may arrive on the Quest.
Looking Forward to the Oculus Quest
The Oculus Quest is likely to be the headset of choice for many casual gamers and tech enthusiasts. It provides much of the user experience that the Oculus Rift offers without the prohibitive cost of entry. Especially if you don’t own a PlayStation 4 or formidable gaming PC.
However, if you already have a PS4 or PC, your money would likely be better spent on the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR. The only caveat being if you plan to travel with your VR headset or move it from room to room. In that case, the Oculus Quest would be a much better choice.