LG may be about to launch a VR headset in cooperation with Valve, allegedly at the GDC 2017 (Game Developers Conference) which is already underway. The rumours say it may be launched as early as this week.
If you’ve had a glance at the growing VR space you’re probably already aware that it largely started on gaming PCs, in no small part due to the efforts of digital gaming distributor, developer, and publisher Valve. Primarily this has been through Valve setting up its own dedicated VR channel of its Steam distribution platform, and in promoting developing technologies including Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive; the latter overtaking the former in terms of popularity, both from gamers and devs.
But now LG may be about to enter the space in direct cahoots with Valve itself. Valve has issued a brief statement on the subject, saying only that the new device is “designed to deliver a high fidelity, next generation VR experience.”
Read into that what you will.
Apparently Valve will announce prices and release dates later, but will showcase a prototype model at the GDC event. It’s understood that this will be a PC-based device, which makes sense coming from Valve, rather than being anything like Google’s Daydream View, Samsung’s Gear VR, or the rumoured HTC project, all of which are based on using a smartphone to propel the experience.
The HTC Vive has enjoyed unsurpassed success in the budding VR market, but so far it, like all PC-based approaches, has required a high entry price. The unit itself costs in excess of £700 and requires a gaming PC of between £1000-£2000 to run with any decent level of performance.
On top of that it requires multiple layers of configuration and calibration, with a lot of peripheral bits of hardware in the box to make it all come together. In short, it’s not exactly user friendly unless you’re already a big tech fan of the kind who builds their own high-cost gaming PCs on the regular and doesn’t think twice about it.