With last month’s announcement of the Rift S, it became clear that Oculus was not ready to deliver a ‘Rift 2’, and instead opted to focus on making the existing Rift experience easier to use, rather than pleasing enthusiasts looking for a next generation experience. It was suggested that the company could have opted to offer a ‘Rift Pro’ for that latter group at the same time as the Rift S, but Facebook’s Jason Rubin explained in a recent interview why they didn’t think that was the right call.

Rift S | Image courtesy Oculus

Jason Rubin has been a key spokesman for Oculus since he joined the company in 2014. While he now more broadly oversees AR and VR content & partnerships at Facebook, he’s still closely involved with Oculus. Rubin sat down with Road to VR for a wide-ranging interview at GDC 2019 last month, during which he spoke to the idea of offering a more expensive ‘Rift Pro’ as a high-end option for enthusiasts, alongside the Rift S.

“There’s a cost to everything that a company does. And while there might have been some people that we’d make very happy with [a ‘Rift Pro’], or something along those lines, some group of people would have to prototype that device; some group of people would have to deal with the supply chain for that device; some group of people would have to deal with warehousing, shipping, and everything else. And those people—when you can only have a company of a certain size, we can’t grow infinitely—those people would be taken away from the other things we’re working on,” Rubin said. “So everything that we deal with is tradeoffs, and there will always be somebody who thinks that there’s a better tradeoff that they could manufacture. I can tell you, sitting around the room, these are hard [internal] discussions, but I think we’ve made the right tradeoff with where we are right here.”

For those who were hoping for a Rift Pro or Rift 2, Rubin claims that VR enthusiasts have diverse opinions on what would even constitute a ‘next-gen’ VR headset, and so it would be difficult to please the enthusiast group as a whole.

“The other questions is: ‘what is Rift 2?’ If I go around a table of 10 Rift users and ask them ‘What are you missing?’, some would say things that we’ve added [with the Rift S]—like higher resolution, which doesn’t break the ecosystem—other people would say things like ‘Wireless’—which might not break the ecosystem, but fights against higher resolution. Another person might say ‘Well I want full body tracking’—well that does break the ecosystem, right? Because that’s not something that you can just easily add—that’s going to add back some external sensor or some complicated additional thing that you have to ship, and probably sends the price up,” said Rubin. “As you go around that table of Rift users, what you’re going to find out is what’s really needed, is a $3,000 or $4,000 device that has all of the features that they want at the same time.”

SEE ALSO
Rift S Isn't the Headset Fans Want, But Facebook Wagers It's What Their Ecosystem Needs

In May of 2018, Facebook teased the Rift ‘Half Dome’ prototype which included eye-tracking, a varifocal display, and a 140 degree field of view. While the company was clear that it was only a prototype, it was surprising to see that none of those features wound up in Rift S which is set to launch this Spring, about a year after the reveal of Half Dome.

There will be a next-gen headset one day, Rubin said, but not until it can come to market at the right price.

“VR is going to keep progressing. So, beyond and shadow of a doubt, at some point we will have a next generation where we add some sort of feature that breaks all of the old stuff and makes it either not work, or makes it seem obsolete. Our goal is not to do that right now. Our goal is to bring as many people into the ecosystem as possible. Bifurcating the ecosystem with a Rift and, say, a Rift 2 […] is not the right thing to do right now.”

“We know from Rift we don’t want to sell even an $800 system. Let alone a multi-thousand dollar system. So if we went right now to something like Rift 2, we’d make some people really happy because we’d give them what they want, but most of the people around the table wouldn’t get what they want,” said Rubin. “So what we’re doing is we’re building a bigger ecosystem on what we have now. We know gamers want really nice resolution screens and a really high-definition high-quality light headset, and they want to see their hands. We’re going to build on that until the point at which we know what we want to do next, and the price is right on what we want to do next.”

Right now, Rubin said, the company believes that the most important thing it can do is grow its ecosystem, rather than introduce any major new features or fragment their userbase.

“[We don’t want to] end up launching new hardware that has a lot of people but not enough people that developers want to develop for it and so people start saying ‘there’s no software for this new thing, why did I buy it?’; it’s just hard right now to do that. And we think these two devices [Quest and Rift S] are the right thing to do to suck more people into the business. Once more people want VR, are in VR, and love VR, some subset of them are ready to go to the next generation.”

For much more on Quest, Rift S, and the direction of Oculus, see our full interview with Rubin.

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  • Andrew Dilks

    Dude just transcribed an interview…

    • benz145

      It was my interview lol. Even if it wasn’t, it’s a 26 minute discussion that covers a lot of ground. Not every has the time or patience to sit through 26 minutes, so bringing attention to specific parts of the discussion is useful.

      • TwiztidJuggla420

        I knew I already read this interview before yet it says it was just posted.

  • So because they can’t make everybody happy they come up with a device that makes nobody happy… Yeah makes sense oculus. Sigh.

    • I am happy so there goes your whole no one happy point.. I can’t wait the replace my rift with the rift s

      • Trenix

        Imagine with the money you spent on rift and rift s, you could of bought a better headset, lol.

        • Richard Worth

          That better headset would’ve probably had that annoying sensors you have to place everywhere which is not what everyone wants. Inside out tracking is the future.

          • duked

            It is. But we don’t live in the future.

          • gothicvillas

            annoying sensors? Vive base stations work flawlessly, whereas Insight out is a mixed bad. Yes it works.. oops, not working now. Wait, it works again now. Shit, lost tracking here. Oh, its back… and so on. Casual games perhaps okay.. anything precision required and 100% accuracy its a no.

          • Gonzax

            According to 100% of the reviews I’ve read, the new insight system is just perfect so that’s not true anymore, not for the Quest or Rift S at least.
            I’m really looking forward to the Index but the idea of having to place external sensors almost makes me not want it anymore. I will buy it, provided it offers something considerably better, like higher resolution or wider FOV but still….

          • Tharny

            You know… internet assumptions carry more weight then actual experience ;)

          • Rogue Transfer

            You’ve not been watching the right reviews/hands-on then. I recommend you watch the recent YouTube videos by Cas and Chary VR and VoodooDE showing the testing and loss of tracking issues in Rift S/Quest, along with the Tyriel Wood and Nathie joint Q&A video where they advise that the Insight tracking isn’t suited to ‘competitive gaming’ or games like Onward.

          • The Bard

            Odyssey+. The only choice.

          • Trenix

            Inside-out tracking will never be superior than outside-in. You will never have perfect 360 tracking, because the cameras are on your head tracking your surroundings, rather than cameras facing you and actually tracking you. They may appear flawless, but you will come across games that will test the tracking and wont work optimally. At that point, you guys will cry that people with 360 tracking will have an advantage, because they do. If you’re a casual, then it’s perfect for you. But if you’re a gamer, having an advantage matters, especially in competitive games.

      • The Bard

        Just buy Odyssey+ = no screen-door crap effect, OLED, much higher resolution, wider platform as it supports WMR, Vive, Steam VR and Oculus Store. Also, the price is 299 including controllers. No single point to buy Oculus Rift S(hit) edition for 499.

      • AJ_74

        For your sake, let’s hope the Valve Index isn’t competitively priced, superior in every way and launching with a Half-Life VR that’s only playable on Index.

    • Jacob Cadwell

      I am greatly looking forward to purchasing the Rift S. A $400 headset with a very thin cable, higher resolution than previous devices, and inside out tracking? Yes, please! This is a much more approachable device for people who haven’t gotten into VR yet, such as me.

      • duked

        It does not have higher resolution – the screen has, but not the rendered image. What it does have is worse blacks and no headphones.

        • Tharny

          It has integrated headphones. Saying it does not have headphones is spreading misinformation. Worse blacks are from those that have tried it close to not noticable. Whats your experience with the Rift S when you tried it?

          • duked

            It’s a fact that LCD has worse blacks, and those who have tried Rift S(hit) confirm this. But if all you wanna do is play Vacation Simulator, then yes, the difference is probably not that big of a deal. You call the integrated speakers headphones? OK, then I understand why the difference in blacks/contrast won’t bother you.

          • James Abrahams

            It is not a FACT that LCD’s have worse blacks. Yes on a flat 2D screen OLED has better blacks but since DK2 we’ve found that the black smear is a massive problem with those “better blacks” on an OLED because the pixel switching time from off, to on is slower then from one colour to another. Therefore most developers have had to make their games never have “true blacks” and the OLEDs instead pump out a light grey.

            So we are comparing an LCD with an always on backlight vs an OLED pumping out a light grey.

            You’re just oversimplying what is a complex problem and we’ll know much more for a fact when people play the same games with a lot of blacks like Elite Dangerous on both the Rift S and the Rift to actually know for a fact which is worse.

            “People who have tried Rift S confirm this” Do they? Who? Do you have any sources? I’ve found this here: https://www.reddit.com/r/oculus/comments/b44vem/to_everyone_complaining_about_the_bad_blacks_on/

            I am not saying this as a sarcastic rhetorical question. It’s a genuine question because I keep seeing people say it has worse blacks like it is a fact, but haven’t seen a great deal of examples of someone who has tried it out agreeing.

            This compares the Go to the Rift and suggest the blacks on the Go are better! And “not far off” the vive pro.

          • duked

            Yes, OLED have darker blacks than LCD, that is a fact. I do know of black crush, black smear and the unfortunate brightening of the deepest black, though. Still, the dark grey (not light grey) is far darker than the “blacks” of LCD. I know of no LCD headset that has darker blacks than my Vive, correct me if I’m wrong. Here’s one comparison, OLED vs. LCD: https://youtu.be/w5Clnp1afIU (fast forward to 15 min 46 sec)
            I think you can check with Seb of MRTV and Anthony of VR 365.

          • Tharny

            So you tried it since you can judge it? Or just more internet assumptions?

          • Rogue Transfer

            *Integrated speakers – not headphones. That’s like equating integrated speakers in a TV to on-ear headphones.

        • Jacob Cadwell

          I can live with no headphones because I was planning on using a better pair anyway. Either way, I’m waiting for Valve’s headset too.

      • Rogue Transfer

        The resolution of the Rift S(1280×1440 per eye, LCD) is lower than previous devices like the Dell, HP, Lenovo, Asus and Acer WMR headsets(1440×1440 per eye, LCD). Not to mention the Samsung Odyssey and Odyssey+(1440×1600 per eye, OLED).

        Nearly all of those can be bought for(at times) up to $200 less than the Rift S.

        • Jacob Cadwell

          That’s a fair point, but you have to consider everything about the device. The Odyssey may have true blacks and a significantly higher resolution, but I’ve read many reviews which nitpick it for poor tracking and being uncomfortable. Either way, I want to see Valve’s idea of a VR headset before I make any major decisions.

          • markiej

            The tracking is on par with all WMR headsets (as an owner for almost a year – I’d call it pretty great, but that’s because I have muscle memory which naturally avoids the deadspots, and things like keeping my arms at my side for too long), and there are lots of ways to wear it uncomfortably, and one way that’s actually quite comfortable.

        • care package

          Higher resolutions need higher spec’d PCs. Something that gets overlooked too often. VR enthusiasts that push for high specs are pushing to slowly kill VR, not help it, or at the very least keep us in the forever Indies only situation we seem to be in now.

    • David Miller

      As a current non-VR owner, makes me pretty happy. Unless the Vive Index blows me away, the Rift S will be my entry into VR. If I didn’t already have a decent PC, the Quest is looking pretty damn tempting as well.

    • Richard Worth

      Speak for yourself, the Rift S and the Oculus quest is EXACTLY what I wanted.

      • AJ_74

        Are you saying that if Oculus had equipped Quest with PC-tethering capability (as they should have), you’d still buy a $399 Rift S?

        I’m guessing the answer is no, even if you say otherwise.

        • care package

          Except the Quest wasn’t designed to tether, so whether the answer is yes or no means absolutely nothing.

    • Gonzax

      Actually it makes a lot of people happy. Thousands will be very glad to get rid of their sensors. I intend to buy the S even if I am very happy with my current Rift. Other than the new audio ‘solution’, which I hate, I think everything else about it is very good.

      • BK83

        The inside out tracking is reason enough for me to upgrade to. Like you, I wil miss the headphones. But an uptick in resolution and inside out tracking, decent upgrade.

        • care package

          diddo. SDE is why my Rift sat for months. Pretty much anyone who has the Go and a Rift says they wish the Rift display looked like the Go’s. I’ll miss the headphones, but I might end up really liking the off ear ones too.

      • CHEASE

        You could have gotten the odyssey plus months ago if you wanted to get rid of sensors. With IPD adjustment and 90 hz, for $300. Sure, it can’t track with your hands behind your back, but the tracking works fine for everything I’ve thrown at it.

        • Gonzax

          Touch controllers is one of the main reasons why I’m sticking to my Rift and my IPD is right in the average so that’s not a problem either.

          I`ve never had any problem with my tracking, by the way, I set it all up in 10 minutes and I’ve never had to touch it again, not even once; it’s been working flawlessly for almost two years so sensors are not a problem for me but still I like the idea of getting rid of them, to be honest, I find insight an upgrade without a doubt.

          • CHEASE

            Have you used any other controllers? I honestly don’t have a strong preference between touch, WMR and vive controllers. I was surprised because touch look like they would be better, but in practice it just doesn’t make that much difference. They all have roughly the same capabilities. Maybe the knuckles will change that.

    • Bob

      Always funny to see the internet genius project their own opinion as the opinion of everyone else. Hardcore enthusiasts, original Kickstarter backers and all 8 of those who upvoted you (as I’m typing this comment) including yourself are pissed but I’m pretty sure the newcomers don’t really care and let’s be realistic here your little enthusiast group is severely outnumbered.

      • Tharny

        It always like that. And they also have the impression that there is so many of them, but for the most they are just a drop in the ocean.

    • Tharny

      Stop behaving like you talk for everybody. You are not talking for me. Looking forward myself to replace my CV1 with the Rift S.

    • Charles

      The Oculus Quest is an interesting product. The RIft S, not so much. The Rift S is like a “Rift 1.3” – not even a half-step up. 1440p and non-OLED is just pathetic in 2019. You can get a much better HMD for the same price (Odyssey+), and there are much, MUCH better HMDs coming out within the next month that are only slightly more expensive. The only advantage the Rift S has over the same-price Odyssey+ is that its controller tracking is probably better in specific poses.

  • Trenix

    Remember when people kept saying the Rift 2 is still coming? Nah brah, you have the Rift Tradeoff, because you guys asked for it! Honestly I’m sorta glad that facebook aimed for the brain-dead casuals who couldn’t do a basic sensor setup. I honestly doubt most of them will buy the device, but whatever gets more people in VR I guess. I however will like to have a product that is actually worth the money, even if it’s more expensive.

    • Michael Berra

      Blogs do the same thing, as does google, any website you’ve ever been on, porn sites, shopping sites. It blows my mind that people think only facebook does this. Literally every website that has advertisements on it does this. Facebook can’t invest in VR until there is a bigger market than 1 million out of 8 Billion

      • Trenix

        The problem is that website tracking can be completely eliminated by using the right browser and addons. Yet with facebook now they’re going to track your voice, your home, and everything you do in your VR headset. With Facebook’s reputation, it’s dead obvious that they will. Yet with other headsets, they most likely wont nor would they care about doing it.

        If you think Facebook is offering a cheap product for the masses, you’re highly mistaken. They’re more likely offering a cheap product so they can make money off of your personal data. They’re made it obvious that they have no regard to VR headsets. Oculus is not what it used to be, it’s been sold off to some moron who thinks his users are idiots. Literally, he actually said that.

  • mfx

    “The other questions is: ‘what is Rift 2?’ If I go around a table of 10 Rift users and ask them ‘What are you missing?’, some would say things that we’ve added [with the Rift S]—like higher resolution[…]”

    What a f*ck*** lie, no.. the resolution bump you did is a pure joke, you didn’t completed this request AT ALL…!

    • Pre Seznik

      Yeah, that was a bullshit response. They didn’t actually “go around a table of 10 Rift users”, because if they did, those aren’t the responses they’d get.

    • Peanut1337

      Higher resolution LOL.
      Even the Quest has a higher resolution than Rift S. This resolution increase is pathetic.

  • Trenix

    I also love it how they act as if they actually tried to give what customers wanted. They literally just made another company make their headset for them and called it a day. It’s dead obvious that their entire focus is on the Oculus Quest. If anyone falls for this, you are an idiot.

  • Stefan Küppers

    I think developers main concern is the installbase. So if you sell a product that is only slightly above the first gen you probably continue your path of slow growth. If on the other hand you offer a kick ass product that is so good it basically forces all 1st gen adopters to upgrade you create a good secondary market. That market isn’t directly affect your profits but imho contributes a lot more towards a bigger installbase and happier devs then the current strategy.

    • Samantha Ann Patterson

      After the f***ing they gave devkit developers, don’t expect many of us to want to rush in and work with them again.

      • Johnboy

        Are you inferring there was a “Rift-2” devkit in the wild or are you refering to the original devkit f***ing? There were many f***enings in Oculus’s dev relation closet.

        • Samantha Ann Patterson

          Well. The DK2 was the one that really burned me. I rewrote the VR implementation about 4 times BEFORE they ditched Mac and Linux OH, and deprecated the DK2 so that is was a $500 insult to a many thousand dollar injury.

          • Dan DeMontmorency

            Doesn’t the semi Linux binary work by using wine with Oculus runtime workaround? Or was that ditched or community based?

      • Peyton Lind

        Huge loss if they lose whatever piece of crap software you develop.

        • Samantha Ann Patterson

          Aw. Those are some sour grapes. I get it. You’ve only ever gotten Lucky with your Palmer and it’s upsetting, but let’s see if we can make you a smidge more self-aware.

          Do you realize you’re making childish statements about unnamed software because the developer dislikes racists and happened to mention that racism was an additional reason to dislike someone who had screwed a bunch of developers for thousands of dollars on an article about how his former company was screwing customers, giving them no upgrade path?

          Clearly you’re the expert here, but doesn’t that make you sound kind of like a tool with some screwed up double-standards? I mean unless you’re a racist of course. Then it would fit together.

          • Tharny

            HE is the sour grape?

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            You smell like desperation.

          • Tharny

            Thanks for proving my point.

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            It really stinks. Doesn’t your mother ever hose down your cage?

          • Dan DeMontmorency

            I am not making a poke. But did your company collapse due Development costs? If not then keep moving forward. No need to dwell on the past.

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            No, we did not. I terminated the project and ate the loss.
            As to not dwelling on the past, there’s an old adage: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
            As a corollary to that: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool someone else while I stand by and do nothing, shame on me.

          • Tharny

            Lol… someone need to go out and get more fresh air it seems.

          • Dan DeMontmorency

            While I can understand your sour grapes. Shouldn’t sink to Peyton Lind’s low level.

            With emerging technology often ideas are scrapped & new directions chosen. How often has Microsoft broken backwards compatability? Where as usually in linux there is easier workarounds that don’t require rewriting the whole stack?

            VR is still very new. But while OSVR didn’t take as well as it should have. OpenXR should help to make things easier for Devs. At least Valve is still making aims into Linux & while slow mac as well.

    • Downvote King

      A product that forces people to upgrade in order to enjoy new games/experiences would be the opposite of creating a bigger install base. It would be starting from scratch. Many features that could be considered truly next gen would easily split the install base like this (body tracking, eye tracking, etc.). Unfortunately, I think Oculus may actually be right in their approach here. It is important to expand the reach of VR to the mainstream, and cost is the most sensitive part of this.

      While a truly next gen headset would be wonderful for the hardcore who are willing to invest thousands into their setup, this would barely make a dent in the overall market. On top of this, most next gen features just don’t seem ready for large scale production yet, and certainly not a cost that approaches mainstream viability. Maybe in 2-3 years the market will be ready for next gen.

      • Samantha Ann Patterson

        Uh. The Vive has *full body tracking. The Pro has higher resolution, wireless, and integrated sound and should be compatible with Knuckles (full finger tracking)

        I don’t mind Rift falling by the wayside in as much as they cost my company a few person-months of software development time which is a pretty substantial amount of money. On the other hand, the industry is still small and stagnation by a relatively big player is bad for everyone else. Also, I get the feeling that they’re basically hoping this will be a big year for VR and their longer term strategy is to get a bunch of new entry-level users on two-years-ago’s hardware then exploit them for upgrade paths next year. Works for Apple.

        *Okay, it has IK tracking so it interpolates the joints you don’t have. If you have trackers on your feet and pelvis, it makes a guess about where the knees are based on the relative orientations. Ditto for the chest between the pelvis and head, but given the constraints of human joint system, it works decently and more trackers would give you more accurate motion (at more cost)

        • Downvote King

          You’re correct that there is technically a roundabout way to approximate some semblance of full body tracking using Vive trackers, but that’s not a real, integrated solution. For that you would need some kind of Kinect-type device, fully supported by the manufacturer.

          I don’t believe Oculus’ move to make a better low end product is leaving the VR market to “stagnate”. Only the small group of hardcore enthusiasts would ever spend the cash necessary to supply a true next gen experience in 2019, and there are several other players to address this niche market.

      • Stefan Küppers

        Forcing customers may have been to strong in wording. I actually thought more in the way of coercing or attracting people much like apples new phone, or the next gen console.
        I also don’t think that the majority of things like foveate rendering, multifocal optics, higher fov, eye tracking, better displays would split the install base.
        The index trackers probably will but my guess is that devs work around and they would be more of an enhancement then a necessity.
        After all in contrast to the console market the headsets are highly backward/ forward compatible and PC devs have learned to accustom a wide range of specs traditionally.
        Well time will tell. If we see a massive shift towards the steam eco system people like me would have traded in their vives for indexes or pimaxes, if the shift is towards occulus, even tough disappointing in terms of specs, they did everything right bringing in more new people by offering a cheaper entry point and out of the box mobility…

        • Downvote King

          The problem with attracting mainstream customers at the moment, I believe, is price and ease of use. Anyone I’ve ever shown PSVR to is blown away by the functionality and quality of the experience – meanwhile it is a relatively low end setup in the market landscape. However, when they hear the cost, and see how complicated the setup can be, most people nope out of ownership. Obviously to the hardcore, this is a cheap and easy to use device, but to the average consumer, a PS4 plus PSVR is just too much cost to justify, as is the mess of cables and cameras. I think to target this audience, Oculus has made exactly the right decision with the Rift S and Quest, and hope they don’t disrupt the ecosystem for another couple years until the market and tech has matured a bit. Average console cycles are 6 years, even if Rift 2 takes 2 years to arrive it’s still ahead of mainstream tech cycles.

          As for the headset and developer market becoming fractionated with the introduction of true next gen tech, I do think this is inevitable. To a certain degree it is still possible to port titles from stronger, more capable hardware to weaker/older systems, such as from Rift to Quest, or from PS4/Xbox One to Nintendo Switch. If the market exists, and design constraints aren’t too specific, it is often possible to craft still fantastic experiences on lesser hardware. However, the cost and viability of this becomes more prohibitive as the gap widens.

          By example, foveated rendering requires a totally different pipeline, and done properly allows a huge leap in processing efficiency; taking this route to it’s hopeful conclusion, it would absolutely allow a level of rendering that would be very hard to reproduce without that feature. Similarly, finger tracking via tech like Knuckles, implemented with care to become integral to an experience would be impossible to emulate any other way. As would full body tracking, or eye tracking; if either are tightly developed into game design principles there are no straightforward solutions to replicate them otherwise. Even a sufficiently wider FOV could open gameplay scenarios that would be difficult to downgrade.

          I agree though, time will tell! I do think it’s almost certain the Quest and Rift S will outsell Vive, and Index (if similarly priced to Vive), largely due to cost and ease of use being primary drivers of the mainstream market. Plug and play functionality is huge, as is being in the realm of console pricing. I also tend to think that Index may split the market in any case, as I see Valve making Knuckles controllers in particular integral to the next iterations of Half-Life, Portal, Team Fortress and Left 4 Dead, etc.

  • Peter K

    Even free isn’t cheap enough for convincing the larger consumer base to use current gen VR. When even phones can be charged for 2000$, prices really isn’t the issue here.

    • IanTH

      Not really a great comparison. $2000 is the niche of niche, bleeding edge tech enthusiasts who want a foldable phone of the future right now. Mass market will not come close to buying a $2000 phone.

      In 2018, the global average cost of a smartphone was $363 – interestingly close to the $399 price point we have for the Rifts. But think about that for a second. That’s what people on a large scale are willing to spend on their phone – a device that they use to stay in touch, call or text family, use mobile pay with, take notes on, be able to tap into the Internet wherever they are in the world…while also playing games. Smartphones are integrated into everyday life so deeply these days that most people can justify spending a little more on an object they use all the time, and one they’ll likely hold on to for years.

      And to point more to how price is the issue, let’s look at gaming dedicated devices (mostly what VR is in its current state). PS4 launched at $399 and XBOX at $499 and while Sony won in a landslide, and I think that has merit to show the importance of a price point, we can see that both companies kept to that ballpark price point. PSVR’s launch price was $399.

      There are so many examples of products in this price category that we have to assume that companies have buckets of data to prove that if you want mass market adoption for most things, $399 is the way to go.

  • I don’t want a $2k “pro” headset just because I like spending money for fun. I want it because, although I saw promise in my Rift CV1/Odyssey, the image quality is nowhere near good enough, for the virtual tourism which interests me, to really be enjoyable, let alone displace my (4K) monitor.

    • Bob

      Not everyone has $2k+ of spare change hanging around like you.

      • I mean more that, the price needs to be whatever it will be in order to meet a level of quality that’s appealing to use. At least for my uses, we’re not there yet.

  • plrr

    A big part of this, that wasn’t mentioned now, is that even with a 1080 Ti you can only increase the pixel density and field of view so much, especially if both of those are increased simultaneously. Consumer-grade hardware simply could not power a headset with significantly improved visuals.

    • bmichaelb

      Next gen hardware will have eye tracking that uses foveated rendering, which reduces GPU load by as much as 50%. Needs an Nvidia Turing card though…RTX 20xx or GTX 16xx. It uses the Variable Rate Shading feature in Turing. AMD supposedly had their own version coming out as well.

      • plrr

        Yeah, when they get foveated rendering working, that should improve things a lot, I suppose. As resolutions increase, it should be mostly the fovea that needs to become clearer

        • bmichaelb

          It is working…Vive Pro Eye and StarVR already have eye tracking at it’s working with foveated rendering at the demos, and Pimax is also about to release eye trackers as well. And word has it, the new Valve Index also has eye tracking. By the end of this year, foveated rendering will be used by the community.

          • plrr

            Oculus has claimed they need a few more years to get it foveated working well… for different people, and everything. I don’t know if there is an element of subterfuge. The percentage of GPU load reduction (compared to normal rendering) should be less than dramatic initially (perhaps 50 %), but that number should be dramatically higher as pixel densities increase.

          • bmichaelb

            That’s Oculus’ attempt at it. Others are using Tobii eye tracking, and Variable Rate Shading from Turing (RTX 20xx and GTX 16xx cards)…and it’s working right now. They said it could reduce ‘up to’ 50%, but the way Vive Pro Eye is doing it, they increase the entire resolution 9x, then reduce the clarity to the peripheral of the user’s focal point. But most importantly…it’s Oculus’ own version of foveated rendering that they said would take a few more years. If they do what everybody else is doing, then they’d have it working right now.

      • Michael Berra

        Which is probably precisely why they are waiting to make the “rift 2” until that next gen hardware is optimized and ready

        • bmichaelb

          The reason they scrapped Rift 2, at least for now, is they want a cheap headset they can push to the masses, so Zuckerberg gets his 1 Billion users in VR. They claim they couldn’t make a Rift 2 cheap enough…they figure $800 is too high. We’ll see May 1st when Valve officially announces the price for their Index headset. They don’t have stockholders to answer to, so they can charge a more reasonable price.

          • Michael Berra

            “Reasonable price”, yeah my guess is $800 minimum, but I guess we’ll see.

          • bmichaelb

            Oculus actually said in the article they think $3000 for the Rift 2…which is absurd. As for the Index, I’m expecting $800-$1000…tops. Vive OG went for $800, and Vive Pro’s going for $1400…but HTC has shareholders to feed, which is why they charge $130 USD / $180 CAD for a single freaking controller…lol. Valve owns the SteamVR tracking system, and they said a while back that the Lighthouses 2.0 would be cheaper…due to less moving/expensive parts. And screens are cheaper now due to more units being run in the factories. Oculus seems to be targeting the entry level consumers, and HTC’s targeting the professional/enterprise consumers. Valve’s in the perfect position to undercut HTC and take hold of the enthusiast market. This should be interesting.

          • Michael Berra

            There is a limit to how cheap you can make a product. Also Valve needs to make money too so don’t assume that shareholders actually effect very much. My guess is minimum 800 for Valve, possibly up to 1200-1500 depending on specs. Aren’t the lighthouses going to be “wireless”? Best option for people is just gonna be to buy an oculus but then buy valve knuckles to use . can probably get away with that for like 600. It blows my mind that people still compare a 400 dollar headset to a 1200 dollar one and are like “OMG WOW VIVE hardware is so much better”, yeah, it also costs 3x as much.. Oculus is gonna blow up with 90% of the sales since VR won’t have a pricewall of 1k behind it. Quest alone is going to destroy everything.

          • bmichaelb

            Lighthouses were always wireless. As for Buying an Oculus then getting Knuckles…won’t work…needs the headset as the Lighthouses work on bluetooth, and the bluetooth is in the headset. Same as the controllers themselves…all haptic feedback and button presses transmit through bluetooth. As for valve making money…yes, but it’s their company…it comes down to how much of a profit they actually need, since they also make 30% off of every game sold on Steam. As well as at least 3 of their own VR games in the works. They can go for profit, or they can sell at a reasonable price and build their consumer base quicker, making more money on the games.

          • Michael Berra

            It will definitely be interesting to see where they go. Oculus sensors are not wireless which is what I was comparing too. I wouldn’t necessarily bring up how much money Valve makes since their revenue is 4.3 billion and facebooks is 16something billion. Money is a non-issue for both companies and both companies have a solid stream of revenue apart from their VR. I guess May 1st will be the best indicator of what to do. I’m debating if I want to buy a rift S (I hate my sensors with a passion) or a Index. All depends on the specs.

          • Dan DeMontmorency

            Truth Valve has a key Benefit. In that like **Microsoft, Sony & Nintendo** they can price the headset at a loss (more consumer friendly) than HTC & Oculus relying on content sales. Consoles are often sold at a loss. This is known as a marketable loss as you rely on folks buying other items that have a higher markup.

          • Downvote King

            How is it possible to guess the Index’s price without even knowing what their feature set is?

          • bmichaelb

            Guessing on parts already listed, then basing on what HTC charges, but keeping in mind HTC price gouges. Samsung Odyssey’s going for $500 USD…use that as a base price.

          • Downvote King

            What do you mean by “parts already listed”?

          • bmichaelb

            Sorry, not actually ‘listed’, but leaked. The screen is supposed to be the same resolution as the Vive Pro/Samsung Odyssey…we got that from a dev who posted a screenshot from SteamVR showing the hardware specs. We know the device has 2 passthrough cameras, as well as the open backed headphones…that apparently blow air into the person’s ear as someone whispers into it. The device has dual-lenses, and supposedly has eye tracking sensors and cameras behind the lenses. We also know it has a manual IPD adjustment. And lastly…we know it uses the SteamVR 2.0 Lighthouses, which are supposed to be cheaper to produce than version 1.0, and we know the Knuckles/Index controllers will be available in the full bundle. What other hardware do you need to know?

          • Downvote King

            I guess FOV would be nice to know, but this is still all unconfirmed speculation, is it not? Regardless, sounds like in this theory you are taking the Samsung Odyssey+ and adding eye tracking, and extra lenses, as well as headphones that provide haptic feedback, new tracking, and finger tracking controllers. That’s a lot of extra/new hardware, which means additional manufacturing pipelines, etc. I’m interested, besides the still looming point that none of this is confirmed, how you are assigning specific value here, and what the cost you project actually is?

          • bmichaelb

            It’s a freaking guestimation. Good grief.

          • Downvote King

            I understand it’s a guesstimate, I’m only curious as to how particularly you arrived at it, and assumed you were interested to share as you are discussing it on an industry forum after all. If so, I’d be glad to hear your thoughts, if not no worries I’ll survive.

          • bmichaelb

            Sorry dude…took it the wrong way…it’s just one of those days. I’m judging by the Vive Original launching at $800, and the Vive Pro being $1400. I figure HTC is price gouging for that $1400, and could probably get away with ~$1000. Then I’m also taking into account the Samsung Odyssey…OG, not the Plus, and it’s going for $500, and it has the exact same screen as the Vive Pro, 2 front facing cameras like the Vive Pro, and built-in headphones…though they suck. That leaves the Vive Pro charging nearly $1000 more for a headset with a more comfortable headband, a manual IPD adjustment, as well as the Wand controllers and Lighthouses. For an extra $1000. The Lighthouses 2.0 are supposed to be cheaper than the originals, due to less expensive parts.

            “In late June, Valve will be offering another alternative with the TS4231. This particular part uses 5 components per sensor that makes it cheaper to place at each sensor. Additionally, it will provide a burst of data per laser or sync hit. Using this data will allow information to be transmitted on the laser itself, which can be uses to learn more about the source of that laser.

            According to the SteamVR team, this new capability to encode information in the laser is important for two reasons. First, it allows support for more than two base stations, thus larger tracking volumes. Second, it allows a base station to function without including a sync blinker, which is the source of most of the interference between base stations (and is also a significant driver of base station cost.) We call this technology sync-on-beam. This is what Valve is calling SteamVR Tracking 2.0.” – vrandfun (improvements-coming-steamvr-tracking-2-0-base-stations)

            As for finger tracking…there’s a cavity in the front of the Index headset, and most suspect it’s for a Magic Leap unit…it has a USB port, and is roughly the same shape as the Magic leap. So, the onboard cameras are for passthrough if that’s the case. Other than that, it’s software that does the tracking, so that’s not going to put much of a dent in the overall price.

            Lastly…the upcoming Rift S is going to be $399. So, just compared prices, components, then factored in that Valve’s a private company, so they can sell for whatever they want…even a loss if it sells more games on the store. So my guesstimate comes to $800-$1000. I’m hoping it’s less, but I don’t think it will be more.

          • Downvote King

            No worries, happens to everyone on occasion. I think that’s a fairly even handed assessment of the market, in my understanding at least. I did think that Knuckles allowed finger tracking without a Leap Motion upgrade though. I also wonder if Index will be capable of WMR-style onboard tracking in scenarios where Lighthouse tracking is not available, while still offering the ability to increase tracking reliability and accuracy with Lighthouse.

            Besides this, if Index does come in as speculated with the same resolution as Odyssey, increased 135 degree FOV, and finger tracking Knuckles controllers, if they could manage a $600 USD price tag, that would still be a significant 50% more than both Rift and Quest, but offer a very real upgrade of at least a half generation – I think this could give them some real power in the market. Your assessment of $800 – $1000 seems reasonable though. Perhaps maturing technologies, increasing scale of production, and selling at a loss akin to consoles as you also note, will allow more aggressive pricing.

          • bmichaelb

            Cool…I missed the ‘finger tracking controller‘ part, figured you were just talking regular finger tracking. I’m not sure how much Knuckles would cost, but I don’t see them being as much as HTC’s $130 for a single Wand controller. As for combined inside-out as well as external tracking…that’s something I’d like to see with the Rift-S. Tested asked Nate Mitchell if they’d consider combining the 2 tracking systems, and he said they’d listen to what the people wanted. It’s only a matter of coding and an option in the Oculus setup. With my 4 Oculus sensors, the only occlusion possible, is if the controllers are close to my stomach, and I’m bent right over. Other than that, there’s always at least 1 camera seeing the controllers. The Lighthouses should be the same. The Vive OG uses 2 lighthouses, but I came across a thread on the Vive forums, where a staff member was saying 4 Lighthouses can be used now…not just for a larger area, but to avoid occlusion even in a smaller area.

            7 days to go until the official Index release. I’ve got my money saved…I just hope I have enough. If not, then I’ll have to wait until the end of May to order. As long as I get it by 1st week in July…bday present to myself. :)

          • Downvote King

            I’d really like to see next gen combine ultrasonic tracking with inside-out camera tracking. This should provide nearly the same accuracy as external sensors/emitters with ultrasonic picking up where the cameras leave off. In some cases it may even work better as occlusion doesn’t much change their accuracy. I’d just really like to see things move in the simplest possible direction, which means getting rid of as much external hardware as practicable, although for something like full body tracking that may be impossible – not that I would put much past advanced AI/algorithms to predict body position, etc. eventually, or even something like full body inside-out ultrasonic tracking.

            I hadn’t realized Index pre-orders were open so soon! I guess that means official specs soon too… hopefully?!?

          • bmichaelb

            Haptic suits track themselves…how, not sure, but they do. I don’t know enough about ultrasonic tracking, but sounds difficult if more than 1 player in the room. SteamVR 2.0 Lighthouses can support multiple players in the same play area. Personally, I have no issues with external tracking. I just wish Oculus had gone with the Lighthouse tracking system instead of Constellation…no USB cables required. In fact, the standalone headsets could have used the Lighthouses as well…they don’t need a PC, and communicate through bluetooth direct to the headset. And if they wanted them portable, it’s easy enough to set up stands, then use 12v battery packs to power the Lighthouses.

            As for pre-sales…May 1st, with shipping sometime in June. It said June 15th on the leaked page from Steam, but that’s a Saturday, so was probably a placeholder. All specs should be posted on the release date. Unless someone leaks this weekend.

          • Downvote King

            The ultrasonic tracking I was thinking of has so far only been used in all-in-one standalone systems, the first time I saw it was in a Pico VR system, one of the Neo versions maybe, but the Vive Focus 6DOF controller dev kit also apparently used one:

            https://www.roadtovr.com/vive-focus-6dof-controller-dev-kit-uses-ultrasonic-tracking/

            I’d like to see this technology used in conjunction with standard WMR/Quest style tracking to create “sensor fusion”, and improve the tracking of controllers both while visible and occluded from the headset. As each technology has a level of accuracy acceptable for use on it’s own, I believe together they could actually approach something more akin to Valve’s Lighthouse, or Oculus’ Constellation; perhaps even better.

            When I think of the future of VR, I’m always cognizant of the thought that anything which becomes truly mainstream will need to be as simple and user friendly as possible. This is why I think external sensors will ultimately go away. As easy as it is for an enthusiast like yourself to setup and use, it’s still an extra roadblock for a casual user, and often all it takes is a single hurdle to cancel adoption. In this way, I don’t think haptic/tracking suits are likely to represent solutions outside the hardcore. Some kind of predictive algorithm, or headset based imaging that can accurately model body position will be needed. That said, I also don’t think body tracking is necessarily that important, at least in the near-term. Even telepresence can get by with just face tracking.

            A lightweight, low profile all-in-one device will likely be what breaks through and becomes the standard, for better or worse. Hopefully, unlike the Quest thus far, they also offer the easy upgrade path of wireless, or even wired, tethering to a more powerful system such as a PC, or a console. With an ecosystem like this, I think you could pull casual/mainstream consumers along to the deeper waters of enthusiast VR. Simple, plug and play out of the box functionality is key I believe though. I think John Carmack has mentioned this a few times as well. These systems need to be as easy and intuitive to use as a smartphone, something you just pull out of your pocket/bag, place on your face and go.

          • bmichaelb

            That ultrasonic tracking is only good to 1 meter. I’d still rather have external tracking with the WMR cameras. Even with haptic suits…they aren’t cheap, and you have to wear the thing…sleeves, legging and all. It’ll get hot…or at least sweaty. If people don’t want external trackers, they can just buy a lower tiered headset with internal tracking. Just don’t take away the external tracking for those who want the best experience possible. You can’t do full body tracking with internal tracking. There’s quite a few people already using the Vive tracking pucks to do full body dancing in VRChat, and I saw a video of someone doing roundhouse kicks using them. It opens up so many options in gameplay…like using feet in soccer, kick save in hockey, or even using your feet in the dance games they’re releasing for the Quest. What might be a better than mounting sensors on stands…design a 180 degree camera that can be placed in corners, that doesn’t have to be positioned. That’s the most tedious part of placing the sensors. Unless IMUs can do it by themselves, external tracking is still the best way to track. Even with the Rift S and Quest…there’s still areas of occlusion, and the IMUs can only predict for a total of 1 second once the controllers are out of camera’s sight. If the industry goes inside-out, I won’t be buying anymore headsets.

          • Downvote King

            I’d definitely advocate for all-in-one systems like Quest and Vive Focus to be able to integrate with more advanced tracking in the same way that I think they should be able to tether to console or PC, but it’s important that core functionality exists to reach mainstream. Full body tracking via a Kinect-like device could be a solution to both this and increased tracking accuracy in general. More than likely a new technology will come along eventually that allows complete inside out tracking, obviously it would be impossible to guess what that might be now. Purely from a current day, inside tracking standpoint though, I think ultrasonic would be a solid addition to visual tracking; I hadn’t heard there was a 1 meter limit but I’d guess if that’s the case it would only be a temporary limit until the technology matures.

          • bmichaelb

            Kinect only works with a single user…the external trackers can have at least 3 players…if using the wireless adapter, but I’ve read up to 4 is possible. If they come up with a solution that doesn’t require a haptic suit, can track the entire body…front and behind, and can have multiple players in the same area…then yes, take my money. But until then, external tracking is still the best.

            As for the 1 meter part…it said so in the article you linked:

            “Steiber noted that the system’s tracking field of view is 180 degrees horizontally and 140 degrees vertically, and that it’s capable of “high accuracy” up to one meter from the headset.”

            They also need to drop the smartphone approach…use a laptop CPU, GPU and RAM, on a custom VR headset shaped PCB. Or…use the chip ARM designed specifically for VR, capable of 4K. Android devices are limited…both in horsepower and resolution. The Go only does 72Hz and can’t be supersampled. Jagged edges in a lot of scenes. The only reason they went with Android…is because it has it’s own operating system already. They took the easy way out. All-in-one headsets of the future will need a lot more than a smartphone CPU.

          • Dan DeMontmorency

            I recall a kinect mishap on the xb360 involving 2 kids playing a kinect game. One sibling elbowed the other. So at least on the xbox 2 players are possible. Plus he said kinect like device.

          • bmichaelb

            “Plus he said kinect like device.” That’s true, but then you’d need more than just 1 device, as they’re best for front facing, not 360, so you might as well just continue using the external trackers. Otherwise, you’re still going to get occlusion while turning, or if 1 player is between the tracker and the other player. At least with the external sensors, it knows which player is which. lso…you still need to setup and calibrate the kinect, so it’s really not any easier than the external trackers. At least n my opinion.

          • Downvote King

            I’d assume that future iterations of any Kinect-type device, not an actual Kinect, would be necessary for full support, as they would be for the ability to track more than one player at once. Of course, inside out tracking again used in conjunction to create “sensor fusion” would clearly assist with any tracking. Similarly, I’d assume that further developments in ultrasonic tracking would surpass the current 1m limit.

            To reiterate, I think that all-in-one devices are needed for mainstream adoption, but I see no reason why they shouldn’t also be made robust enough to tether to a more capable device in a variety of ways to deliver the best possible experience.

          • bmichaelb

            If you’re going to use ‘Kinect-type devices’, you need more than 1 for full 360 tracking. You need to set them up, and calibrate them. Might as well just stick with external trackers then.

    • Dan DeMontmorency

      Haven’t tried a pimax yet?

      • plrr

        No.

  • Rosko

    People are disappointed with the Rift-S because of the lack of headphones & the fact that it was a smaller step up in resolution than the Quest. Also lack of manual IPD & being LCD. Rubin just creates a straw man argument when finding excuses for the spec of the Rift-S.

    • Thunk

      I think because they added internal sensors, etc, it drove the cost of manufacturing up, that they had to cut things like headphones, 2x OLEDs, etc. They’re trying to grow the overall VR userbase by making VR more simple and accessible to set up, which meant cutting some features.

      • IanTH

        Quest and Rift S are the same price. Quest has OLED panels, a self contained computer (mobile as it may be), a battery…all things that have an added cost above Rift S components. So even within its own product lineup, the pricing doesn’t appear to make sense.

        Not to mention WMR sets are basically the same thing, component wise, as Rift S and we see the former being sold for as little as $199. The Rift S has an RGB stripe pixel arrangement for the LCD and it has more cameras for improved tracking volume which may add to the cost, but it doesn’t seem like it would be a $200 increase worth of componentry.

        I have to assume the Rift price is what it is due to Lenovo getting a cut and perhaps even to offset a loss they could be taking on Quest sales. I think ensuring the price point doesn’t rise above $399 is a good idea in terms of attempting to increase adoption of VR to a wider audience, but I think $399 is still too high for most people.

        I think they need to get Rift S as cheap as they can and perhaps also start selling their own bundles of preconfigured desktops (or partner with other PC makers by allowing a discounted Rift purchase to be made at time of sale through their respective websites) to make one-stop shopping and compatibility easier and more affordable.

        • Thunk

          Yeah, like you said, the price is probably due to a cut between Lenovo and to offset potential losses from sales of the Quest. I think the plan is to continually lower the price of the Rift S over the next 2 years until it’s around $199 or so.

  • TwiztidJuggla420

    There are some of us who are waiting on real 2nd generation consumer versions of vr headsets. You aren’t going to get any of that market with these products. Oh well, Vive is better, more open, and not Facebook any way. I had been excited about the StarVR headset, but now it doesn’t look like it is going to be aimed at consumers. My cousin just got a Pimax a few weeks ago that has better specs than Oculus, maybe I’ll just grab one of those and call it a day.

    I guess you can just keep releasing the same non-next gen devices so you don’t piss off current owners by making their devices obsolete… What a dumbass approach to tech, lol. I’m glad AMD didn’t think like that before they released Ryzen and made all of the prior CPUs obsolete.

    • Gonzax

      Vive is better?? really? a ridiculously overpriced piece of hardware with terrible controllers is better than Rift S? come on, let’s get serious.

      • jj

        vive is better for tracking since full 360 wasnt just an afterthought

      • James Cobalt

        I’ve used both. Vive Pro, at least, is significantly better. Is it a better VALUE? That’s subjective. But on objective measures, pretty much everything about it is better.

        • AJ_74

          You haven’t used the Rift S.

  • judgeman

    Increase the FOV dickheads, that is all. Resolution is the easy part. You guys are one step forward, ten steps back. It is ‘ Virtual REALITY ‘ not retarded Virtual Cartoons, stop with the horseshit mobile VR

    • Xron

      They didn’t want to increase Requirements, its understandable at this point.
      Not including earphones, + the only way to change IPD will be in Pc, these are the problems, they could and HAD to solv.e..

    • Michael Berra

      I don’t think people realize the picture quality will be roughly 3x as clear with LED as it would be with OLED is due to the way the pixels work on OLED. Your blacks may not be as black, sure, but with a screen hardly an inch from your face, I don’t think black is a color that will be viewed often as the whole point is to be able to see, and to have black would be a useless use of VR.

  • superdonkey

    the sensible thing would have been to put a displayport / virtual-link into the quest

    • Baldrickk

      Exactly. Cost of a couple of ports and a few more chips is what? Two or three dollars? Could either be absorbed into the mark-up or add a few more quid onto the price, so $425 instead of $400.

      They talk about not wanting multiple products requiring attention and bring out the quest and rift s as separate products anyway.

      Stupid. Left hand, meet right, maybe you two should talk.

      • IanTH

        They also talked about how the experience wouldn’t have been the best for each individual product. They’d rather have each be excellent, rather than one end up being be a jack of all trades, master of none. This could very well be consumer misdirection, but I cannot imagine why. They are pushing Rift/Quest crossbuy for titles so they aren’t getting double cuts from that, and they get the majority of their money from software – at least currently. So I am, in this instance, comfortable with taking what they said at face value.

      • B mill

        How do you really know that adding a couple of ports and a few more chips only costs “a couple of dollars”? Are you privy to their expense and labor reports?

        • TwinFire

          so true, its a huge misconception that adding aport here and there is just a matter one one or two dollars. Its Tens of dollars per port.

          • Baldrickk

            I was expecting about £10 extra cost, hence my retail price bump of $25 which would more than cover it

        • Baldrickk

          I’m not. But…
          The ANX 7530 chip used in other headsets has a development kit that retails for $200.
          I’ve not worked with that chip myself, but if that tallies with my experience with other chips, we would be looking at a retail cost of maybe $10 in bulk.

          This tallies with the cost of a USB -> DP adaptor (going the other way, and actually doing more) all packaged up, and sold individually at retail prices.

          If anything, £10 is a gross over estimate, but it’s decent enough to speculate with.

          As for development costs, they could have saved all the money they put in to develop the S into developing a hybrid quest.
          Not to mention that they already have that circuitry in every single existing rift.

          • B mill

            Ok so you’re speculating, you actually do not know their costs involved nor how it would effect labor or manufacturing, you’re basing it on your assumptions. I do not believe it would only cost “a couple of bucks”, sorry.

    • plrr

      This would seem to make a lot of sense. And judging by what Carmack has said, it might even happen.

      There may be unspecified reasons for why Rift S and Quest aren’t one and the same headset. It is likely that the specs of the Rift heasets will diverge from Quest’s in the future, At this time, it seems they couldn’t surpass Quest at the desirable price point. It might also have sent a negative message to replace the Rift brand. This may also be Oculus’ way of bringing in a third-party headset into the eco system, which isn’t as straightforward as it is on the Steam VR platform.

    • That is what Qualcomm’s VR spec is, which will be first seen in the Cosmo. You either hook up a cellphone or a computer, using a USB-C port for data and power. Then you use the HMD and trackers for whatever system is plugged in. Oculus will get wise to this, *someday*.

      I’m willing to bet it’s just the idiots in the Marketing Department that are stopping this system software tweak from being accomplished. They likely believe that “PC Support” will kill all interest in the Rift S, and dropping the Rift S will cause people to believe that the Quest isn’t a PC headset at all. They don’t think people have the intelligence to understand it can do both!

      This is why Marketing Departments are universally hated in the tech industry.

      • marcushast

        The Cosmo isn’t stand alone, it requires being tethered to a computer device. It’s basically the same as the Rift S.

  • ¥DK¥

    They’re wankers, does that explains it well enough? :(
    They’re just trying to make a good nice profit with these ones rather than actual improvement, no good to upgrade from a CV1 to any of these two…
    For newcomers yay I guess!

  • Gonzax

    As much as I would have liked a Rift 2 I have to admit I think he’s totally right in his comments.

  • Peanut1337

    – still low resolution
    – still low FOV
    – no more headphones
    – no more IPD-adjuster
    – no more OLED
    – Lenovo plastic design

    I can understand that there are people who don’t want external sensor-tracking. But the setup never was a big deal for me. I’d rather have external sensors or lighthouse than internal sensors with trackingholes.

    And somehow I can understand that strategy with Rift S and Quest. They just need to focus on new customers for VR. VR needs more users to survive.

    I would buy a Valve Index as a replacement for my Rift CV1 though. I don’t want it to be easier to use. I want it to be better and more professional!

    • Bob

      “I can understand that there are people who don’t want external sensor-tracking”

      Pretty much everyone new to VR is not going to want to setup those sensors all around the room. It might not be a big deal for you but let’s face it you’re not exactly going to pull in more potential users to the ecosystem if you stick with this strategy; Oculus/Facebook are a for-profit business – a product more convenient to use = more money.

      • Peanut1337

        Ok but I won’t buy any HMD with current-gen inside-out camera tracking like RiftS.

        Will get the Valve Index with lighthouse full-tracking. I don’t care what oculus is doing.

      • AJ_74

        But then again, Bob, you’re assuming that ease-of-use trumps all drawbacks and still comes out worth $399 to the average consumer. I don’t think that’s a rational assumption.

        It’s not that Facebook, HTC and the like are wrong about VR being analogous to the smartphone market, they’re just wrong about where VR is in that timeline and completely ignorant of history.

        Let’s not forget that smartphones didn’t become something coveted by every man, woman and child in the world until the iPhone came along and raised the bar through the stratosphere. It certainly wasn’t cheap, but everyone wanted one. They’re even more expensive today, comparatively speaking, yet the average 10-year-old has one.

        • Bob

          Ease of use is just one of many things that contribute to the success of a product. The original argument is about removing the need to setup additional equipment in order to experience VR and this is incredibly important when we’re talking about “mainstream adoption”.

          “Let’s not forget that smartphones didn’t become something coveted by every man, woman and child in the world until the iPhone came along”

          And why do you think this is the case? Surely I don’t have to point it out to you.

          • Mradr

            The OG Iphone had good specs though – and was a head of its time even for easy of use. It also cost quite a bit more than the phones around that time.

            I dont think using an Iphone to say to keep things cheap or easy of use would be a good argument holder:)

            More or less – Rift S needs to be a little something for everyone even if that means a bit of a price increase.

          • Mei Ling

            “Rift S needs to be a little something for everyone even if that means a bit of a price increase.”

            A little something for everyone doesn’t always work.Trying to please everyone can lead to pleasing no one at all. Best to focus on one or the other so I think in this case Facebook are hard at work pleasing the casual user crowd. In future when they’ve absorbed more people into their ecosystem they can start to diversity their product line.

          • Mradr

            Please see iPhone example

        • disqus_9Sq1m8xpqY

          Sold my Rift for a big loss on ebay the vast majority wants a system without sensors and cables all over. Making a new system with sensors is pointless.

      • Rogue Transfer

        And yet, Microsoft’s 6 partners’ headsets all without external sensors needed; with higher res than Rift S and available for much lower prices than Rift/Vive(over half a lot of the time) haven’t managed to take more than ~10% of the market over the last year and a half.

        Microsoft tried that strategy with WMR, but the hyped ‘convenience’ didn’t do it.

        VR isn’t at the point where everyone is interested in it. It’s the gaming enthusiasts that will continue to drive it for some time and with the Rift S/Quest being $400, that will still remain a costly item for nearly everyone still, irrespective of not needing external sensors.

        The lack of setting up once, external units likely increased adoption a little, but it didn’t do much, as WMR shows.

        • Xron

          WMR has crappy tracking system, I have no idea why they didn’t make 4/5 cameras like quest/rift S did… no imagination? oO

        • Bob

          To get VR to point where “everyone” is interested in it you have to make it easier to use – it really is as simple as that. Setting up external sensors and fiddling with more equipment does not help with this case at all. WMR is a poor example because Microsoft were clearly impatient by cashing in on the craze. They rushed out the technology and as a result WMR products at launch had horrendous and mostly inconsistent tracking in addition to the fact that there were far too many WMR products released by various companies in a very short space of time which caused consumer confusion and market fragmentation.

          Not to mention they had no solid software strategy at launch so WMR products were released to users who had no idea what to do with them. Finding and downloading games and experiences were difficult due to lack of focus and investment on the software side.

          Just because WMR did not succeed at mainstream adoption does not in any case mean other companies must fall back to a process that is technically an additional barrier to entry. Forcing the new average consumer to find space and setup external equipment in order to enjoy VR is not the way to go especially if Facebook’s goal is to accelerate progress toward getting 1 billion people into the VR market.

          • Mradr

            The fix isn’t PC though – it would be a more console solution such as the Quest. That leaves the PC version in a bit of a weird position.

          • Mei Ling

            I think it still helps to have inside-out tracking with the Rift S; plenty of PC users also constitute the casual VR crowd and I would think removing the need to put sensors everywhere is going to tempt more of these users into VR through the Oculus ecosystem.

        • Nope, you forget that the WMR experience includes needing bluetooth on your PC for majority of the headsets along with problems with the controllers disconnecting etc. They ARE creating an easier, more mainstream product. You can not deny that.

        • disqus_9Sq1m8xpqY

          Exactly why I just sold my Rift on ebay. I loved it but all the sensors and cables prevented me from using it. I don’t have a dedicated pc office. The external sensor system is dead and for a good reason.

      • gothicvillas

        All around the room… bla bla. On Vive there are 2 little square base stations, once all set up you never even think about it anymore. It’s just there along with my book shelfs etc. Tracking is awesome!! My friend got Odysey wmr and its not even half as good in tracking. Inside out is not there yet. It’s ok for Job Simualtor okay, but the moment you dive in deep end of VR offerings, great tracking is soo good

        • markiej

          I also have a 1st gen Odyssey – I get that lighthouses are the bees knees, and I’m occasionally jealous of tracking perfection. On the other hand, the tracking is way better than people think – especially since a couple of updates that greatly enhanced the prediction side. I have like 40 game – including pretty much all the big ones – and it’s awesome.

      • markiej

        The other nice thing about inside out is portability, especially since now there are plenty of $1K laptops that can run most games quite well. Fun to bring to a friends, or when traveling, or even as a cool thing to bring to a party – bring some nice speakers and have a little have a little “beat saber corner”

  • The Bard

    He basically says the company under Facebook brand could not set and arrange things right and hire few people more. What other company could then? Silly excuses.

  • Fabian

    Blah blah… eco system..blah… vendor lock in… crappy technology is exactly what you need.
    I’ll watch their market share die with a smile.

    • ColaVr

      Haha, oculus market share will only rise. Like it did with rift and go.

      • Fabian

        There was no market before the Rift so how could it raise a share of nothing? The go is something else, not comparable to real HMD. The market share can obviously only go down as there are more alternatives emerging, it’s not 50%/50% versus HTC anymore because WMR has already more that 10% and is growing. Valve will join in a view days, so of course the market share of Oculus will go down, the question is how much and how fast.

        • Michael Berra

          I think you will be very surprised to see this grow the fastest out of all new VR headsets.

          • Fabian

            Of course I would be very surprised, it’s a bad product and there no reason for anyone to buy it. You can get the same quality for half the price or much better quality for the same price. …they should have named it ‘Obsolte Rift’

          • Michael Berra

            Ease of access, no sensors. Plug and play. Higher resolution. Incredibly higher picture quality (almost 3x the amount of pixels due to the way that LCD pixels works vs OLED Pixels). $400 price tag which is the lowest of anything..

          • Fabian

            What you describe is a $200-WMR headset with a $400 price tag.

          • ColaVR

            Superior Touch controllers, 5 wide sensors on hmd vs 2 on wmr, oculus studio games, oculus dash, ASW 2.0 ect …
            Yeah same thing as wmr. /s

        • Mei Ling

          PSVR is leading in market share at the moment followed by the Oculus Rift, HTC and WMR in that order.

          If Valve are able to launch a great product with a strong lineup of software by the end of June then we should see Valve gradually taking some market share off all the existing companies.

          In my opinion by two years time I think the two main players in the consumer VR industry will be Oculus and Valve.

  • AJ_74

    He’s completely and utterly full of shit. If they’d equipped the Quest with a video input/PC interface, I’d consider it a Rift 2 and they’d have my money as soon as the pre-orders went live. In fact, I’d have paid $499 for it with little-to-no complaints.

    The truth is, there is no Rift 2 because Facebook would rather sell 2 cheap-to-manufacture headsets to the few suckers that will buy them both.

    • Fern1247

      Or they are focusing on the mass-market consumers with the Quest, and just updated the Rift with inside-out tracking to keep it competitive with what had come out since launch. It doesn’t sound like you are the target market.

      • Mradr

        The only problem of saying that – is he is. All customers are the target market. The problem is that there is only one headset/product line catering to the total market.

      • AJ_74

        So combining the functionalities of both headsets into one at the same cost would make it less mass-market friendly? Is that your point?

  • plrr

    There is a lot of inappropriate behavior among these comments. Ill-founded accusations, derogatory remarks, and bad language. Unfortunately Disqus’s “flag as inappropriate” feature seems to draw the line at outright harassment.

    • Tharny

      Stuff i expect from kids/teens, not from grown up people as i suspect several are.

    • crim3

      Too many experts willing to give their authoritative opinions.

      • plrr

        That too.

  • Steve Gentile

    So they made a device with a small segment of IPD range for its user base excluding quite a large population of users… how hard would it have been to perhaps sell units based on user IPD ranges ?

    • Michael Berra

      This IPD argument is getting annoying. I imagine no people will actually have issues with it as there is a slider as well as software that adjusts it. Everyone who has tried it that was worried has completely forgotten this was an issue

      • Tharny

        How dare you bring reality into the discussion? Assumptions and misinformation is all that matters these days on the internet ;)

      • Steve Gentile

        That is the most ignorant comment I’ve seen yet. There isn’t a physical slider for one (know your facts). And many don’t have a 62 IPD. And the software slider isn’t going to be adjustable to the ranges needed.

        Again, you obviously don’t know much about what IPD is, you don’t know much about how that effects the experience, and yet your response you obviously think very highly of yourself.

        I’ve used many different VR units, I know my IPD (58), and I know what does and doesn’t work. Care to elaborate on your experience with this – I bet you’re one of those ~62 IPD who says ‘it doesn’t matter what I set it on’ types who don’t understand IPD.

        • Élio Isaac

          Check at 04:50, ipd on rift s goes from 58 to 72, no problem there.

          https://youtu.be/Y-b5ahpz_yc

        • Michael Berra

          You clearly haven’t seen any of the hands-on reviews of this product where people outside the IPD range comment on how “I was worried, but it actually works fine”

  • BK83

    I have the Rift CV1 and the biggest issue I have is tracking. For one they are a major pita to set up, especially with multiple users. We have to reset the tracking every time I turn the Rift on and even then I am forced to recenter every time I start Xplane or Project Cars 2. The sensors force my Rift to be anchored to my desktop, unless I want to spend an hour setting everything up on my laptop. So, the Rift S with inside out tracking is reason enough for me to upgrade. By all the reviews and initial feedback it looks Oculus got the inside out tracking right. The “roomscale” or stand up experiences were lost on me as sensor setup just never worked right with the CV1. With the S I can simply unplug and set everything up on my laptop and use “room scale” features in my living room where I have the room to move around and enjoy them. Additionally, I can travel with Rift S and do some racing or fly the sim while on the road with my job. The Quest wont work for me, because 90% of my time in VR I am using the flight sim or Project Cars 2. Having said that, I think that the ability to use my laptop more easily with VR will allow me and my family to use the Rift more often for VR only experiences and games.

    As for the push to get high resolution displays on the Rift, I am not sure current PC hardware is up to the challenge. My computer has a GTX1080Ti and an 8600K. After watching reviews of the Pimax 5K plus, I dont know that Oculus would have benefited too many people by going to an overly expensive high resolution panel. When all the VR news came out last month I have acutally been drawn to the Reverb and Pimax for the higher resolution which is great in a VR flight sim for gauge clarity and readability. But, I dont see a way to get any kind of decent performance out of current gen PC hardware. There really isnt support for SLI, even though I have read about Nvidias project to use SLI in a way that you essentially one graphics card for each display. If that was the case, then I would more than likely just go for the Reverb and get a second 1080ti. Keep in mind I am more focused on XPlane and racing sims, the Oculus experiences will probably do just fine with a 1080ti on the Reverb/Pimax, but not more intesive VR games. In any case, I am happy with any uptick in graphics and for $399 I feel it is a good value.

    On to the pricing. I have read and seen a lot of talk about the S should be this price based on the outgoing Rifts price and/or comparisons to other PC tethered HMDs and even being compared to the Quest. I personally feel like $399 is a decent price for the S for what I use it for. Sure, I love what the Reverb and the Pimax 5K plus are offering, but at $599 and $699 they really arent great value propositions. The Oculus controllers are the best in the business (Valve knuckles controllers arent technically out yet) and the Pimax has by most accounts terrible ergonomics and a cheap housing. In addition, the Pimax requires the HTC lighthouse sensors and controllers, so add a few hundred more dollars to the price. The Reverb has those aweful Windows mixed reality controllers (yes I’ve tried them and they are terrible). What I am getting at is that Oculus has put R and D into creating a comfortable somewhat portable experience for $399. In addition, my laptop GTX1060 should continue to be able to give me a great experience when I am away from home or in my living room enjoying Beat Saber. There is no way the Reverb will give me that option.

    The only thing left is to see what Valve has to offer with the Index. Valve (Index), Oculus (Rift S), and HTC (Cosmos) are all playing the hype game, but within the next couple weeks we should all be able to settle on our next gen HMDs with improved tracking, graphics, and visuals whichever we decide to buy.

  • Muzufuzo

    WHY can’t it at least have Quest resolution and manual IPD adjustment? Technology is there but Oculus is not. Very disappoonting. Facebook with all their money couldn’t do anything spectacular.

    • Michael Berra

      Have you actually watched any reviews for these devices? Literally everyone has said IPD is a non-issue, when they thought it would be a huge one.

      • Andrew Jakobs

        Most people who’re complaining are propably people who are outside the general range and need the manual IPD.

        • Michael Berra

          This is incorrect, the majority of the Reviewers thought they were outside the range or that it would be an insane issue and found out they can fine tune it with the software. The people complaining are people with less experience than the reviewers since the reviewers are actually hands-on with the products. unless your eyes are on the side of your head like a bird you’ll be fine.

          • Andrew Jakobs

            I think you’re partially right, but I also think that there are enough complainers who base it on their experience with the Oculus Go (which is about the same in regard to lenses and IPD as the S).
            Would you buy it without really able to try if you have a wide or narrow IPD which is outside what Oculus mentions as the range? I wouldn’t. I think I’m lucky enough to be within that range.

        • Tharny

          Those that are complaining have not tried it and just assume stuff. Those that actually have tried it are not complaining.

          Internet assumptions beeing internet assumptions as usually. 90% of this thread is full of assumers and armchair developers/engineers.

      • Muzufuzo

        There are no reviews of Quest or Rift S as of now (only hands on) and Rift S has more issues than lack of manual IPD adjustment.

    • mirak

      It has as much subpixels i think.

      • Muzufuzo

        it doesn’t speak well about Rift S but bad about the Quest

  • Samantha Ann Patterson

    Yeah. I’ll stick with the vive pro which has all of those features and doesn’t have any connection to a racist like Palmer Luckey and didn’t burn me repeatedly on development. I was one of the fools conned into early adopt of the Rift DK2. Developed cross-platform and they kept wildly changing the SDK with no real clear path between them so you had to redo your integration every single time. Then they dropped mac and linux support to boot, leaving me with a couple hundred hours of wasted development time. F* Oculus. There are better options.

    • Jeremiah

      You need to back up such claims, Palmer is from what I can see, a credit to the US.

      • jj

        are you joking? its public knowledge he was funding some sketchy right wing influencing propaganda. if you missed that then u live under a rock. there are complete books written about i at this point.

        • David Quinn

          Right wing isn’t synonymous to racism you tool.

          • jj

            right wing might not be( though i have some doubts with some of the more extreme influences) but SKETCHY RIGHT WING is synonymous to racism. learn to read butt muncher

          • David Quinn

            You can’t just make up a term and use it, kiddo. Grow up.

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            1) Racism is synonymous with the Right. Basically that’s all they have remaining except I suppose homophobes, misogynists, and edgelords who fantasize they’ll find their specialness if the world burns. … Well, and I suppose pedos. Lots of pedos on the right lately. So I suppose we should give you that one. It’s probably hard for pedos to be too picky about their targets.

            2) Isn’t hard at all to search ‘Palmer Luckey Racist Meme’ or simply, ‘nimblerichman’ if you want to use his self-aggrandizing handle. Super easy to fact-check. Have fun.

          • Peyton Lind

            You are a clear example of why leftists should be muzzled as you’re all mentally deranged and all live in some fantasy world where you think everyone is an “ist” of some sort. I’m sure I am a misogynist for trashing you and if you’re a lesbian, I must also be homophobic.

            The hilarious thing about leftists and their constant “you’re a racist! A misogynist!” idiocy towards anyone who has the nerve to not be part of the leftist cult (and often towards people who are part of the cult but dare to think for themselves at times, as seen by the attacking Martina Navratilova recently got and Cher) is they ignore history. It was democrats who were the party of slavery and segregation and if you look at all the main cities that are really jacked up, they’re run by lefties. Lefty policies do more harm to blacks than those evil right wingers.

            But hey, keep throwing out your moronic cult ideology that you get from your cnn and msnbc brainwashing. The pedophile part is really great given it’s lefties who are usually the pedophiles and it’s the left that is trying to normalize pedophilia.

            As for Palmer, leftists claiming he is a racist because he didn’t like Hillary doesn’t mean he is a racist. Again, idiot leftists think everyone is a racist. Leftists think voter ID (meaning proving you are who you say you are) is racist.

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            Someone’s triggered. I was clearly tongue-in-cheek trolling. Geez. You in Texas? I’d heard there was a baby born with no skin there.

            I think we’re both aware that it was a smidge more than ‘doesn’t like Clinton’ and as I said, it’s very easy to fact-check with a few simple search terms. I didn’t include a particular source becaue whataboutists like yourself will cling desperately to anything they can use to attack the messenger and people should fact-check from multiple sources anyhow. I know it’s all ‘MSM’. ‘THE MSM’ and ‘DEEP STATE’, right? Maaaan meth must be a great drug. I bet it goes well with being a pedo.

            Also, pro-tip, if you stand behind a racist, you’re a defacto racist. To paraphrase someone you respect: You’re intellectually lazy. And it’s probably not your fault. Intellectual laziness is a trait of Trump Supporters. It really is, I believe that. It’s not anything you can control…. Don’t you agree?

            Anyhow. Let’s get back to talking about how Oculus screwed developers and said screw you to customers. That’s the story here. The rest is just dressing, and we all know your would-be Caesar can only make word salad.

            Cheers! :)

          • Jeremiah

            Ah I see you’re a bigot, sad you believe the establishments propaganda about us. Blocked.

          • David Quinn

            Sorry, stopped reading after the first sentence.
            You are accusing a group for generalizing certain groups by generalizing them…

            do you see the problem?

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            I do. You have a short attention span and are easily triggered. If you took that post seriously, you deserve to. Or maybe you’re a pedo and it made you nervous. :)

      • Samantha Ann Patterson

        You are really unable to use a search engine and type ‘palmer luckey racist meme’? You’ll find a few dozen articles on the subject. I’m curious. Are you too lazy to do your own research or are you merely hoping I’ll cite a single article so you can begin attempting to kill the messenger?

        • Jeremiah

          From where I’m standing you are the one attacking people with slander, projection much. I have done my research and see no credence to such claims.

          So do you base every life decision on Google search? I’d rethink your life if I were you, maybe you’re just jealous of Palmer’s success. I don’t know your issues, but oh boy you’ve got some.

          • Samantha Ann Patterson

            Yes. Don’t believe any research or public statements by Luckey defending it, or follow the money. Listen instead of the sad croaking of Jeremiah the full of Bullfrog. Right? :)

      • Samantha Ann Patterson

        You can search ‘Palmer Luckey Racist Meme’ on your own.

  • Xron

    Ye…. start searching for AR specialists… really… An easy way to show how much you care about Vr…
    Btw, not having any CLEAR roadmaps can leave them in dust by other companies, because even if they get us 2nd gen rift, we wouldn’t know when to wait for it and probably will buy some other Hmd’s, and I doubt many “regular” people will give a “…” about their sudden release, because they will have PSVR2 by that time… ;p
    P.s ofc if oculus won’t bring us full body tracking, some suits with haptic sensors…, otherwise it might too late for them. Especially if they plan to release Gen 2 ~3/4 years from now and we can predict it from words of Abrash ( Oc2018 ).

    • Andrew Jakobs

      It’s not like any of the other vr hmd makers have a clear roadmap, or even one..

  • This statement is a blueprint for absolute corporate bullshit.

    The company is owned by Facebook. They can make anything they want to make. If they choose not to make a good VR headset, then they have made a very peculiar decision that is most definitely not based on money. Not even close. This sounds like the U.S. Navy saying it can’t afford a Sunfish.

    Seriously, this in nonsense.

    VR needs one main thing: reality

    There isn’t anything else that a headset manufacturer needs to talk about.

    ‘Bifurcating the ecosystem?’ Anyone who uses this phrase… please, if you are in a conference room with him, just laugh while holding up your middle finger… even if you work for this jackass.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      And another person who hasn’t got a clue about doing business..

      • Business is much simpler than some of its practitioners like to admit.

  • BobbyBingo

    Inside out is a nice move forward, everything else is a backwards step (and lets not pretend there aren’t definitive “next gen” features to be worked on). But let’s be real here, “Rift-2” isn’t happening because Facebook intends to shift focus to a few generations of Quest development. Its not an insane move but it is a different market and has a longer gestation period than many of us would like before the platform is capable of more than mobile+ experiences.

  • οκ

    I guess we will see if Oculus was right by the sales. So, when Index is releasing?

    • Andrew Jakobs

      Next week we will know everything about the index..

  • mirak

    That’s bullshit to say they can’t grow indefinitely as a company.
    Facebook have so much money that they could rebuild the Keops pyramid.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      You really have no grasp of doing business…

  • Michael Berra

    Makes sense. Don’t wanna come out with a 1000 dollar headset when there still isn’t a good market for VR. work your way into the masses first to generate revenue, then sell upgrades once there is higher demand for your product. No sensors and Higher Resolution is great

  • Fourfoldroot

    In my opinion people who are disinterested in VR are such because of quality and convenience issues, not because of price. It’s not like VR can ever be an impulse buy if you need an £800 PC first. And those people who already have sufficiently high spec PCs are gaming enthusiasts who will buy tech if the experience is good, not just cheap.
    Cheap VR just risks poisoning the well.

    • airball

      Assume VR is convenient and the quality is there. What use cases are there that propel it to ‘in every home’ in your opinion?

      • Fourfoldroot

        Assuming the most important things (such as quality and convenience) are there, then secondary considerations would be things like price (not really applicable to PC VR as the price consious are already screened out by the need for a higher end PC) and exclusive games I guess. It’s important the price does not compromise the previously confirmed quality though.

        • Andrew Jakobs

          To me the current headsets have quality. Maybe not the quality YOU expect, but for the price and the technology available it’s at a pretty solid stage.. But price is everything, as explained a thousands times here, they can build the best (for now) imaginable headset, with 180+ FOV, 4k+ per eye, accurate fullbody tracking and wireless, but that’ll cost thousands and thousands of dollars at this point in time, and to drive it with the best visuals you’ll need multiple highend nvidia GPU’s (and I’m not talking about the 2080ti, I’m talking about their professional GPU’s) which also cost thousands and thousands of dollars.
          At this point in time people seem to expect way more than is possible at the moment for a consumer price (which is about $400-$600 MAX).
          People really need to be realistic about it, and that’s the biggest problem, a lot of people here on road-to-vr seem to have a very unrealistic view on whats possible for a reasonable consumer price.

          • Fourfoldroot

            It doesn’t need to be best possible, but eye tracking and foveated rendering would see big leaps in quality and, if anything, reduce the cost of the required PC. Just having this is a suitable generational jump in my opinion, and wouldn’t cost the world.

          • Andrew Jakobs

            But good eye tracking adds extra costs to the headset, and every little thing “wouldn’t costs the world”, but a lot of those little extra things will cost the world in the end. And ofcourse foveated rendering is also still in it’s infancy, so it should also still mature, we still haven’t seen real implementations of it except some demo’s with some comparisons, but not real games comparisons. And others would then say, but if you have eye tracking and foveated rendering, then why not also add higher resolution displays because what’s the point of having those features otherwise..

          • Fourfoldroot

            Who’s talking about “a lots of little extra things” I only mentioned one thing in eye tracking. This would provide a generational leap in fidelity without requiring new PC hardware. You seem to be imparting me with the voices of every person requesting a certain improvement and presuming I want a massively expensive device. I have not mentioned increasing field of view or resolution or anything else. Next iteration should have the inside out tracking yes, but also eye tracking. This is a the next step. What is being offered here is next to pointless, it won’t attract new interest and doesn’t represent improvement enough to upgrade. It best it’ll bring in a few who’ve been waiting for a gen 2 which now seems won’t come for a long time.

          • Andrew Jakobs

            sigh, but you want one thing, other want other things. And it isn’t about upgrading existing users, it’s getting new users. And yes maybe eyetracking will be the next improvement, but if it is, a lot of people will start complaining about the lack of other advantages.. You can’t make everybody happy..

          • Fourfoldroot

            Of course not. But the answer is not to make nobody happy, it’s to make the most people happy possible to get the most sales. Releasing a headset that is barely better in a few respects and worse in others…they don’t appeal to anybody with this.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      You’re looking too much at your own needs, not the bigger picture and the long run. But that’s also why they have the quest, so you don’t need the 800+ PC (although 800 only gets you really the bare minimum to do VR)

      • Fourfoldroot

        I was trying to avoid the responses of people saying “you don’t need a £1k PC to do VR”…
        And I say again, there will be no long term if the VR well is poisoned with bad experiences cheap enough to be experienced by everyone.

        • Andrew Jakobs

          VR has already been a pretty long term thing, as it has been around for decades (consumer at least since 1995) already. Only now the technology has become cheap enough to have great HMD’s for under 1K (at least what I think are great already compared to the old HMD’s). VR isn’t going away, it will only get better.

  • David Quinn

    How very convincing… not.

  • AS

    Yeah, oculus is dead, the next gen wmr gear will kill it off.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      Don’t count on it.

  • Andres Velasco

    By Oculus, thankfully there are other companies making moves

  • Jerald Doerr

    Facebook can squeal look at me! look at me! all they like but I just can’t hear them…. even after May 1st… If the Index fails me I’ll probably just upgrade to a PiMax… As it stands I’d even look at other options before Facebook gets my buck as I’m just not interested in a clear downtraid!

  • Rob Smith

    Excuses like this are just what happens when there’s not much competition. If someone else was close to half-dome level equipment, you betcha Oculus would be right there with them. Valve might kick em into action.

  • Callsign Vega

    I hope the sales of the crappy Rift S are abysmal. They are basically coming out with a headset no better than the first one three years ago.

    • Tharny

      So you have tried it?

      My wild guess is that its gonna sell better then the CV1.

      Just in my own circle of friends there is several that did not buy the CV1 even after actually find it awesome when trying mine. Many of them now consider buying the Rift S due to ease of use, less cables and need for usb ports and the fact that they now get the possiblity to turn around 360 without having to add to the cost of getting more sensors. Also most of them have gaming laptops with not enough usb to drive a CV1, but that problem is out of the way wih the Rift S.

  • The future needs to be an open HMD standard which various manufacturers can approach, but still keeps a standardized tracking system. This is where Qualcomm is likely to come ahead in the future, with their duel PC/Mobile solution. VIVE’s lighthouse tracking is already used by several headset makers, which is great, but it seems like everybody is leaning heavily towards inside-out tracking, and even HTC is hedging their bets with the Cosmo, which is again, based on the Qualcomm standard.

    Qualcomm is likely to be the spec hardware makers use (which will inherently use their Snapdragon processors) and, Steam and Google Play are likely to be the dominate VR software delivery engines. Oculus has no future in low-end, they will just fall out of the market the same way Commodore and Texas Instruments fell out of PC making. It’s all about the open standards, like Intel and Microsoft was to the early PC.

    Oculus could hold an Apple-like niche in the high-end, they have the design chops to do it, but they have no future in the low-end. If Oculus wants to be the Microsoft in this future VR headset market, they should be trying to make an open VR standard, like Lucky Palmer originally envisioned, and try to control a piece of the software market. Otherwise, a single company, even with the backing of Facebook, won’t be able to stay relevant in the future.

    So far I’ve been right about all predictions related to the VR market since 2014. This will pan out over the next 5 years. Unless Qualcomm is wiped out of existence by an asteroid. Oculus will be sold off by Facebook before 2025. They simply won’t be relevant by that point. Oculus will be a brand-name, and nothing more. They will be as relevant to the future of VR as IBM is to your home computer now.

  • plrr

    One would hope that the Rift S is usable and acceptable to more than 70 % of the population.

    One might also hope to see a headset on the Rift platform, perhaps in 2020, with a resolution that requires both foveated rendering and at least a GTX 1080. I wouldn’t want to switch platforms and turn to Revive to be able to really follow the evolution of VR. An anthusiast might consider a €800 headset if there is a noticably increase in immersion.

  • TwinFire

    VR needs to impress the mass market, and Quest is the best bet. What impresses mass market? Ease of use, pick up and play. Think Gameboy in the 90’s. Doesn’t matter the graphics are behind the curve, peeple just have to ‘get it’ and quickly too, no lengthy setup etc.

    I certainly wont be buying any Oculus products because I’m not mass market, but they are doing the right thing for everyone in the end.

  • Lucidfeuer

    And…Oculus continue to be dead. They have no intention on making a real product and instead seem to have settle for tech-washing justifications…

  • Dave

    The signals Jason Rubin is sending out is damaging Oculus and Facebook. Somebody needs to fire this guy and get some PR people in which can put a more positive spin on things to undo the damage which has been done.

    Right now VR companies are stumbling over themselves to create VR headset which we could consider 1.5/2.0 generation. The killer HMD doesn’t exist but it’s coming and you have to worry for Oculus as there stuborness with the HMD progress will kill there existing market share once the other VR companies get there act together.

  • Andrew Jakobs

    No, but the Forte VFX-1 was, and some other headsets back then..

  • Ugur Ister

    As a VR/tech enthusiast it is easy to be disappointed. We’d like as much progress as possible, as quickly as possible.

    In this case i totally get where Oculus is coming from though.

    While i would like a headset with much bigger fov and way higher resolution and eye tracking and and and, the reality is lots of people do not have a high end graphics card and a higher fov and higher resolution requires more powerful graphics cards.
    One could say that can be alleviated to some degree with foveated rendering possible with eye tracking, but that does not happen automagically either, the major engines have to make good use of it, else it is just nice hardware with a lot of unused potential.
    So that making nice use of foveated rendering hardware has to be implemented in the engines, and that will take some time to work really well. And then once in the engines it has to be put into use by the game/app devs.

    (
    and a short aside on increased FOV:
    Regarding increased FOV, there is also the aspect that while it looks way cooler and is way more immersive, it sadly with current tech has the potential to massively increase simulator sickness for any movement where the cam moves different than the body physical motion, see many devs then using things like tunneling/vignettes during such movements to counter that, an increased FOV is basically the opposite of doing that.
    Increased FOV means even less indicators for the brain that one is looking at a picture inside a frame and hence then if there is a mismatch between what the eye sensors and inner ear sensors report regarding perceived motion, that is a bigger throw up reason to many.
    Sure, if someone never ever gets simulator sickness, that’s great for you
    (and i am aware of the notion some have that one can basically train oneself to get “VR legs” as in get less and less prone to simulator sickness by stepwise increasing the intake of simulator sickness causing content, each time stopping before one feels bad, take some fresh air, time off, then try again to go a bit longer next time etc.
    It is actually valid one can train oneself/one’s brain like that, but it takes time and is not something one can recommend as solution for the mass market as i have seen many do, like “hey, those guys should just train to get their VR legs, don’t diminish the experience for everyone who already has VR legs!”
    While i agree there should be controls and visual settings options to ideally satisfy a broad range of user types, VR will sadly not get anywhere if we as a user group insist the solution to VR sicness is everyone prone to it has to suffer through bad stomach until they are trained to not get it anymore)

    ,as a platform holder, people like the fellas at Oculus have to watch out to ideally reduce the amount of simulator sickness issues rather than increase them massively by introducing one feature which massively increases the incidents for many while no other tech improvement is ready yet which would sufficiently reduce it way more.
    (Like hey, maybe Samsung develops those entrim 4D headphones or similar tech further)
    )

    Me personally, i think a Quest or Rift S will not make VR suddenly a huge mass market thing, there are still many content and tech hurdles to overcome which will take a few years longer.
    But if they can help “just” broaden the user base some, that is already something very important at this point.

    Me personally, i meanwhile get Gabe Newell’s view, where he so nonchalantly talked in the vein that he is not really worried whether VR becomes a big thing or not at all.
    Initially i was worried, but meanwhile i get where he is coming from on that one:
    I like regular screen stuff, i like VR stuff, too, and to me personally if i look at it from user perspective, it does not right away matter that much whether VR becomes a huge mass market hit or stays a niche thing for the next 10 years.
    Even if everyone could talk about it being a flop or some people who never tried good content properly on a PC VR headset compares it to 3D tv, why should i care?
    I have the headsets and i have content for them and i can even make more content for them.
    I can enjoy it, no matter if it is a huge mass market hit or not.
    And yes, it is pretty awesome when one thinks about it for a moment.
    No matter all the current limitations, one can put something on and get into a virtual world as immersive as never before possible, and that is something very cool.
    Basically one has the best closest thing to a full amusement park or the first steps towards a holedeck in one’s home, how cool is that.

    But the one side where we all should care about whether the adoption of VR headsets increases or not, is regarding the amount and depth and breath of content we get for it, and that does depend a good bunch on how big the audience is.

    Because if one thinks about it, most users want more good content, and for example i as developer would love to work on more bigger more in depth VR stuff, but it is financially problematic to keep doing on and on while the user base is still very small.
    Someone like Gabe Newell can work on VR stuff as long as he wants, no matter if he sells 1k or 10k units or 10 million units of the content then, because Valve has the financial backing of the Steam store.
    But many individual big game studios already can’t take that risk when the audience is still small.
    And someone like me, i can work on more in depth stuff but i need financing for the dev time, and that financing i can get less easily while i doN’t already have a big VR title to show and less likely i can finance that with some smaller ones first out of my own pocket while the audience is small.
    So yeah, there is a real chicken and egg problem where many users want to jump in once there is more quality content, but to develop more quality content, devs need a bigger audience to be able to recoup dev costs of that more in depth content.

    So i totally get why Oculus wants to increase the audience size asap as much as possible.

    I also tried several titles on Oculus Quest at Oculus Connect and the tracking worked very well even in physically intensive games, so i’m not worried much at all about that part.

    I would like it if Oculus would add the option to connect the Quest to a computer if one wants to use it with computer games/apps and using the pc graphics cards, so one has that option, too and also if one could use it together with camera sensors if one wants to, so as to get the best tracking then when combining the inside out cams with the outside cam sensors, then it would for sure have even better tracking than the Rift CV.
    I imagine that would address worries by many current PC VR users who currently seem to feel like the tracking would be downgraded compared to what they have now. Again, i feel a lot of people will feel way better about this once they try the Quest, but still, having the option to also on top use your pc cam sensors with it, too if you already have them, to then get the best tracking, would be a cool option if technically feasible to implement.

    But besides such suggestions for further improvements, i feel like the Quest is a big step up from the Oculus Go, both in terms of tracking and also the controllers, and the tracking also works way better than for the windows mixed reality headsets, and so i feel it is a bit weird many seem to see the Quest and the Rift S like going for lower end than before, while i see it as opposite after having tried the Quest, it is basically pushing up what what can expect from standalone and “entry level” VR massively compared to the options previously available.

  • Quacking Duck

    I’m waiting for MASSIVE FOV. Huge FOV without degradation of anything = Everybody going yay!

    • Nethiuz

      Pimax my son

  • That’s NOT the reason I’m rather Irked!! It’s NOTHING to do with the specs not being Half-Dome Prototype like or whatever!! It’s the FACT that they intentionally removed all the older CV1 Devices in the whole Freekin’ Country from all Shelf-Stores to Force users into Rift-S only option on PC!! That and they went LCD when Quest offers OLED.. Crimeny, I don’t mind the negligable 80hz, that’s fine, clock down the hz if you raise the resolution to keep arificial minimum PC spec Requirements, but seriously, they did’t really need to increase the minimum spec requirements all that much with the changes they made.. They’ve already lowered the minimum specs pretty low with the whole target to 45fps using their version of Motion Flow Tech, similar to how Modern Smart TV’s add in extra frames between lower frame rate source material, thus it boggles my mind they think anyone still using those minimum-like specs would have much if any interest in PC VR in the first place! I didn’t want Extreme performance, just why take away our OLED screens?!! FFS!! How am I supposed to enjoy using PC VR now on “S” with this absolute awful LCD crud I can’t ever seem to get aaway form!! PC VR was the Dream of being able to get the absolute BEST 3D display and Large Screen Format Viewing without needing a multi thousand dollar personal Movie Cinima setup with big screen projectors and what not! Also with the rapid decline in supported 3D supported TV’s lately, and the Ridiculous costs of LG’s 4k OLED Smart T.V’s, this was my go to for reaching that experience, with the only tradeoff really being just accepting a bit lesser overall resolution image, but the immersion and sheer scale / utility easily made up for all that! Plus the sole fact that in Bigscreen VR you can share a literal Cinima Screen as your own with anyone across the globe who’s access to decent internet / VR setup! That’s just too invaluable to even express just how amazing that is!! I can hang out with Cousins and Family thousands of miles away and kick back in a Room watching a Flick together with integrated VOIP talk / communication and Avatar / Oculus touch controller interactions! It’s all here ready to go, not just some pipe dream for some promised date way off in the future!! I missed my chance to get the CV1 and now it’s gone and the Rift S is just a no deal for me, I hate LCD soo much I refuse to sit in a Bigscreen Cinima with the Rift-S ((which I’d need the PC version if I’m to host in Bigscreen)) whilst all my clients ((those joining my room)) using the Oculus Quest when it comes out get to enjoy watching everything on that way better Display!! Crimeny! What was Facebook Oculus Thinking?! They’re ignoring the rest of everyone elses’ complaints focusing solely on the very few 10% of super rich PC Elitists who complained it wasn’t an $800 + Gen 2 device that only runs on their ultra-expensive, mini Home Super Computer!! Doing that whilst intentionally ignoring / not addressing pretty much at least 40% + folk who hate the fact that this is a terrible LCD display and less resolution than the Quest! We didn’t want a super big increase, we just wanted something that wasn’t utter crap, and didn’t want the other options to vanish such as CV1 which is very anti-consumer, because they didn’t just “Sell-Out” of those, they intentionally pulled them entirely off of shelves! What they’re avoiding trying to admit or bring too much attention to, thought they did make mention of of it at a glance, hoping we’d gloss over that, focusing more on these sorts of responses, is that they did all this to keep the minimum pc specs, that’s it! they’re so gun-hoe on keeping that low so that new-comers who try Quest and are interested in a more powerful PC device will see that, see the specs and think “Well my PC has that!” and bingo they’ve just sold a Quest and a Rift-S to a whatever % larger margin of customers with those older PC rigs! Pfff, just admit that’s the reason they did this!! And seriously Fix this S**t and offer a Rift-S+ version for $50-$100 more with an OLED Screen similar to the Quest’s!! Then I’ll be happy! ~((Rant-Over))~

  • JustNiz

    > “most of the people around the table wouldn’t get what they want,”.

    These people don’t actually exist other than in his head, otherwise the Rift would have already sold more, especially when it was $50 less than the Rift S will be.

  • What he says makes sense from a business standpoint, even if the techie inside me is still angry :D

  • USPatriot

    I’m curious where we would be with VR if Facebook didnt acquire Oculus. I think we would have more innovation in the direction VR enthusiasts want. I’m a bit disappointed with the direction and state of VR right now compared where I hoped it would be by now to be honest. I’m thrilled its alive and working but the direction of dumbing down the devices and making them weaker and less appealing is just so disappointing.

  • JK

    I have the Rift and the Vive setup and have zero issues with tracking stations. I have a massive room as well and never had an issue with the cords. I built a rig just for VR and was looking forward to the next step up. Instead they went sideways. However I can agree that the next gens tech is costly. Can’t see going to the Rift S. I would have if the display been updated to meet both new VR users and give the original VR guys like me the ability to crank it up a notch. I liked the Vive headset but their controllers are way behind the Oculus Touch controllers. The single LCD screen looks to be a mistake since they have two units going out now. The Rift S should have got more of an upgrade since the Quest looks to fill the entry level position.

  • dz11

    That’s ok oculus. Carry on shipping low end crap while Valve embarrasses you with their high end Valve Index headset.

  • Oracle

    This guy’s attitude is a put-off. I already own Rift, which has such poor resolution I never put it on anymore. So I’ve already been “sucked in”. From the reports, the Rift S, and the Quest, for that matter, offer only marginal improvements over the Rift I don’t use. Why spend more money and just be disappointed again? Until feature sets get a lot better, I’ll wait.

    What features? 4K resolution and frame rates are number 1 and 2. Resolution that would enable me to actually SEE and READ the numbers on cockpit instruments in my PC sim. After that, good audio, NO goofy lighthouses, vari-focal optics, and hardware-adjustable IPD. PC-compatible would be essential, and tether-free would be nice. The tech is already out there.

  • neko

    all i want in next gen oculus
    support for same base stations as last gen so i dont have to buy new ones
    higher FOV and bit more resolution

  • Kaleb

    Yeah, well, I’m pretty sure enthusiasts know what they want better than you do, given that you thought the piss-poor audio solution on the S was in any way acceptable. Enthusiasts are what drive the PC industry. Why not just say it like it really is: you think that VR is a passing fad, and PCs are going away. In spite of the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

    By the way, what happened to Half Dome? You got a lot of people genuinely excited for that, then ****** off and made the sorry excuse for a headset that is the Rift S. Standalone sets are catchy, but the bigger market is in PC powered flagship models, and the competition is going to leave you in the dust