Google announces standalone VR Headsets to be launched later this year

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Google is moving ahead with new options for virtual reality, announcing at its I/O developers conference plans for standalone VR headsets and more handsets supporting its Daydream software. At its I/O conference, Google revealed it wants to bring the best of both worlds - advanced 3D graphics and mobility - into standalone mobile VR headsets based on its Daydream platform.

We worked closely with Qualcomm to create a standalone headset reference design, which partners can use as a blueprint to build from. Daydream standalone VR headsets... are a step in the right direction.

WorldSense is a product name for a positional tracking system that operates on an "inside-out" principle; it doesn't need any external sensors or beacons to track the movement of your head through 3D space. While a release date for Google's system is still forthcoming, clearly we won't have to wait much longer for the virtual world to reach that next level of freedom.

These devices will all be built around Google's Daydream VR platform that it has developed previous year in collaboration with Qualcomm. The search engine giant is also adding new skills to the assistant, incorporating its "lens" tool, which lets people point their cameras at things to get more information about them. This makes the headset heavier and less comfortable to wear and also prevents you using VR if your phone isn't around.

So, some exciting days ahead for those keen to enjoy the immersive experience of watching virtual reality videos with a strapped on standalone headset. LG's next flagship phone, which will launch later this year, will also be Daydream compatible. Tango was used in the creation of WorldSense and it also backs Google's new Visual Positioning Service (VPS).

Google Home users are going to see some new features, including hands-free calling, and the ability to control select appliances. This way you will be able to jump into VR without being disconnected from the world if you so wish.

The announcement was made on stage at Google I/O 2017.

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