Thursday, October 6, 2016

Oculus’ new wireless prototype could be VR’s next great leap

“Inside-out tracking” is an almost magical phrase in VR. It refers to virtual reality that doesn’t require external cameras or towers in order to let you move through digital space — which, more than simple processing power or image quality, is the real difference between a mobile headset like the Gear VR and a top-of-the-line Rift or Vive. But that’s what Oculus says it’s cracked with a new prototype, known as Santa Cruz.

Santa Cruz was shown briefly on stage at Oculus Connect today in a video, where it was described as a wireless, mid-range compromise between Gear VR and Rift. But it wasn’t until afterwards that I was able to try it for myself. Hidden in a back hallway of the convention center, the demo booth is arranged like a...

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