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Google, Lenovo announce standalone Daydream VR headset, no smartphone required

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Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:
  • Google and Lenovo announced the Mirage Solo VR headset that requires no smartphone or tethering to operate.
  • The Daydream headset uses WorldSense technology, meaning it requires no external cameras or sensors to track the user's movement in a virtual world.

The Daydream virtual reality (VR) system just got a major upgrade: At CES 2018 in Las Vegas, Google and Lenovo announced the Mirage Solo, a VR headset that does not need any cables, phone, or PC to operate.

The Mirage Solo will enter an increasingly crowded field of tech companies seeking to enhance the VR experience and bring it to the enterprise this year. HTC announced a new, wireless Vive Pro at CES, and Oculus announced the Oculus for Business bundle back in October 2017. It remains to be seen whether any will ultimately become widespread in the business world, as company tech leaders have been slow to adopt the often pricey technology.

Unlike the Vive Pro, the Mirage Solo does not include built-in headphones, but does provide a jack for a user to provide their own, as noted by our sister site ZDNet. Similar to the Vive and the Oculus Rift, the headset also includes 6DoF functionality, which means a user can virtually move behind items in the space, or look around an object, ZDNet reported.

The Mirage Solo is powered by WorldSense, a new Google technology that can understand a user's movement without requiring external sensors, according to a Google product page. This allows users to lean, dodge, or duck naturally as they move through VR content on the platform, according to a press release.

SEE: Virtual and augmented reality policy (Tech Pro Research)

The headset also features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, a 5.5-inch QHD (2560x1440) display with 6DoF view, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage.

The Mirage Solo will be available in spring 2018. Pricing information has not yet been announced, though Lenovo has said it will cost under $400.

At CES, Lenovo and Google companies also announced the Mirage Camera with Daydream, a small point-and-shoot camera that can capture 3D photos and videos, according to the release. The camera features a dual 13 MP fisheye camera and a 180 x 180 degree field of view. Once footage is filmed, users can upload it to Google Photos or YouTube for viewing and sharing, and can watch on a standard browser or on any VR headset.

The camera also comes with the Qualcomm Connected Camera Platform, including dual cameras, built-in Wi-Fi, and an X9 LTE cellular modem, the release noted. Pricing and availability has not yet been announced.

Also see

miragesolo.jpg
Image: James Martin/CNET
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