The World of Virtual Reality
Are you using a PC, console, or standalone VR?
Choosing the right VR headset depends on who you are and which type of content you choose to view and play on the device. VR headsets have become available for almost every platform out there including PC and consoles. Standalone headsets like the Oculus Quest don’t need a computing device since it already comes with it integrated. However, some headsets come with base sensor blocks. The full VR kits are more expensive than purchasing just an individual headset, or going for the inexpensive mobile option.
We’re living in a world where people are still more distant from each other than ever. VR has taken on an entirely different meaning in the last few years. The technology keeps on getting closer to the social gathering/workplace sector that businesses are aiming for. People are using these headsets for hosting virtual business meetings that allow them to collaborate “face-to-face” in a sense. It’s more convenient for business owners and employees to use a VR headset rather than flying to a different country for a meetup. In addition, the software gets updated throughout the months to ultimately form suitable and immersive VR business meetings for everyone.
Above image: VR business meeting
As VR Business meetings become more popular, so do the other aspects of VR. The technology is not just used for games and movies, but also a tool for designing and engineering. You can even build and design your own virtual home where you can watch virtual TV, and even invite others to visit your VR home instance.
Side image: VR home design
VR Headsets in the work environment
Businesses are beginning to use virtual reality to improve their workflow. It’s much easier to physically interact with digital content. VR has become a very popular trend among businesses that do engineering and design. Car manufacturers like BMW have begun using this technology to build new concepts and further improve upon their most recent designs.
Above image: VR/AR headset data science
VR Headsets in Gaming
The gaming industry has been expanding since our digital era began. Virtual reality has massively improved it’s gaming aspect through the following years. In addition, it’s completely changed the way people interact and play games. Whether you’re busy racing a car, or flying a plane, to practicing your sharpshooting, or even building your own virtual home. You’ll feel as if you’re really inside of an actual world. It’s no surprise that some people have been seen jumping and falling around in their living rooms as VR has become increasingly believable to the point where some can’t even tell the difference between virtual and reality. The gaming industry has taken massive advantage of what VR can do. In conclusion, it’s more about the potential of what VR can do, rather than the income made from it.
Above image: Virtual reality gaming
Which VR headset to buy?
And finally, let’s get to which VR headset will be the best pick for you. We’ve summed up a few of the most recent headsets along with their prices. Below is a list of the currently available VR headsets that are among the best you can buy in 2021:
- Oculus Quest 2 – $299 at Amazon
- HP Reverb G2 – $569 – $599 at HP
- Valve Index – $1569 at Amazon
- Sony PlayStation VR – $349 at Target
- HTC Vive Cosmos – $500 – $700 at Amazon
We’ll also talk about some of the benefits in regards to these headsets.
Oculus Quest 2
The Oculus Quest 2 arrived in October the 13th last year. It was based on the previous release, the “Oculus Quest”. The Quest series was the first mainstream standalone VR headset consumers could purchase. It doesn’t require the use of any external hardware, it’s self-contained and completely wireless. It sports a comfortable design with touch control and you can also use it in conjunction with your PC for a full VR experience. The only catch is that you need a Facebook account to use the device.
HP Reverb G2
The HP Reverb G2 has one of the highest resolution displays available. It clocks in at 2160×2160 per eye. It also features a 114-degree field of view. It’s lightweight and comes with high-quality drop-down speakers, so you don’t have to purchase an extra headset.
This is the best choice for serious VR enthusiasts and gamers, that don’t want to spend to much. The HP Reverb G2 is also compatible with Windows 10 VR and Steam VR. Windows 10 VR lets you use the computer in a virtual environment and without the need of an external monitor. You can simply connect your device and run your entire operating system in virtual reality.
If you’re a hardcore virtual reality enthusiast, this is the best option for you. In addition, you can play all of your simulation games in high resolution at 90hz.
The Valve Index comes with the best and most intuitive controllers in the VR industry. If you’re purchasing this headset, you’re most likely doing it to experience and explore the future of what VR controllers are capable of.
However, this is one of the expensive VR headsets. It also requires your room to be setup and a tethering cable as it is not wireless, but this will improve overall performance. Wired setups have less latency and require no internet bandwidth – which may be a cause of performance problems if you’re not using the right network setup. Purchasing this headset, eliminates this issue entirely.
The Valve Index uses little black boxes that act as sensors for the room they’re placed in. This allows full body movement to be committed to the virtual environment.
The headset also supports HTC Vive hardware. So you can hook up pretty much any controller to the device and it will function properly. Furthermore, the Valve Index has excellent audio quality.
Sony PlayStation VR
When the PSVR system first released, it was one of the only head-mounted displays available for consoles. It’s on sale often and comes at an affordable price tag of about $200 if you’re living in the US. Sony has also confirmed it’s next PSVR headset is coming to the PlayStation 5.
The PlayStation VR headset is a few years old, but it still works. You won’t get the best hardware and visual quality, but it is worth it if you’re looking for a budget option.
HTC Vive Cosmos
HTC have blasted their way into the world of virtual reality with their stylish VR headsets. The HTC Vive Cosmos is a major improvement over their previous HTC Vive. Not only does the headset look better than the rest, but it also sports modular faceplates for extra features and future developments. It has built-in tracking and you can flip the visor up without having to take off the entire headset. 4 front-facing cameras are integrated into the front to help with self-contained tracking. You don’t need any sensor boxes like the Valve Index as it does everything right out of the box.
It’s an expensive option, but it’s compact, stylish, and comes with everything you need to experience full VR without any extra peripherals or modules.
This is one of our personal favorites. The headset is futureproofed and modular, which means that it will be supported for at least 5+ years. That should be enough time to put yourself in the virtual world before having to upgrade.
All in all, virtual reality will inevitably become the future of how we interact with computers. Many will disagree, but once you’ve tasted the VR experience, you won’t be going back without it.
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