Huawei is making a virtual reality (VR) headset to work with the company’s latest P9 and Mate 8 handsets, marking yet another player entering the emerging market.
The Huawei VR headset is, much like the Samsung Gear VR, effectively a wearable dock for the smartphones, which provides the screen and processing power needed for the VR experience with a low latency of 20ms.
The headset is a basic pair of strap-mounted goggles with adjustable lenses that allow VR to be displayed at a resolution of 1080p with a 95-degree field of view.
Further aping the Gear VR, the Huawei VR has a touch sensitive panel, back button and volume keys mounted on the side of the headset.
The Huawei VR will launch with 4,000 free films, 40 free games, 150 panoramic tours and 350 panoramic images, according to Engadget.
This will presumably lay the foundations for more VR films, games and experiences to be added by first- and third-party developers, much like the Oculus store for the Gear VR.
It could be argued that Huawei is effectively ripping-off Samsung’s VR efforts, but the latter partnered with Facebook-owned Oculus Rift to target the Europe and US markets, while the Huawei VR is amimed at China.
Huawei’s headset highlights the growth of the VR market with a range of devices from the high-end HTC Vive and Oculus Rift to Google’s £25 Cardboard.
VR has yet fully to penetrate the enterprise market, but the technology offers forward thinking companies a way to augment services and experiences for customers. Accenture recently explored how to mix big data and VR to provide rugby fans with more information during the RBS 6 Nations.
VR can also be used as a sales tool, as seen with the Amba Hotel’s VR app that provides customers with 360-degree tour of its conference facilities.
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