Noah J Nelson on Friday, May. 30th
Last week the word was that consumer electronics giant Samsung was getting into the virtual reality business. Suffice it to say, I was a bit skeptical about its prospects.
Now the source of that rumor is upping the ante in a huge way. Engadget is reporting that Samsung isn’t going it alone on this first generation. They claim that Oculus VR is part of the deal:
Oculus is handling the software side of the product, while Samsung handles the hardware. The deal is a swap: Oculus gives Samsung early access to its mobile software development kit and helps develop user interface software, while Samsung gives Oculus early access to its next-gen OLED screens. And yes, Oculus is still making its own, gaming-focused, PC-based virtual reality headset; that’s why it needs next-gen, high-pixel-density OLED screens from Samsung.
Now Oculus could be arming a long-term rival by making this deal, but when it comes to manufacturing screens few companies have more know-how than Samsung.
This also suggests that there is going to be a ramp-up into full blown commercial VR. Starting with a early-out-of-the-gate mobile experience that segues into the full “sit down” home experience.