Oculus to launch 'Oculus Rift S' VR headset in spring

Florence Fletcher
March 24, 2019

Facebook on Wednesday unveiled its Oculus Rift S virtual reality headset at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

The Rift S will feature a display for each eye that's 1280 pixels wide and 1440 pixels tall. "This headset will effectively replace the standard Oculus Rift headset, which has had production all but halted to make way for the new model". Oculus is also using LCD panels instead of the OLED panels now.

With that being said, there are now five onboard sensors using Oculus' "Insight" inside-out tracking system. The Oculus Rift S features a brand new "halo" head strap which is created to fit the head more comfortably and allow longer stretches of gaming.

If you're anxious that your PC might not be able to handle the Rift S, you can check out Oculus to check the PC requirements. The stripped back Oculus Go, which features 3DOF instead of 6DOF and only tracks one hand instead of two, costs $199. For comparison, the old Rift is £350, the HP Reverb is $600 (£452), and the Vive Pro is £800 (and that's just for the headset sans controllers or lighthouses). While it lacked the motion tracking controllers that would complete the VR experience later that year, it was a high-end headset with solid tracking and great visuals. The Rift S also offers a higher-resolution screen compared to its predecessor. Using what Oculus calls "computer vision algorithms", the headset itself is able to trace physical spaces in real-time.

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Both the Oculus Rift S and Oculus Quest are priced at $399 each, and will launch later this spring.

Oculus partnered with Lenovo for its design, also offering better weight distribution and improved light blocking. It's also heavier than the original headset, though Oculus isn't saying by how much just yet. This includes a higher resolution display, front facing cameras, room-scale tracking out of the box and a few other less obvious improvements. The Quest promises to let you have VR gaming experiences anywhere you wish to take it, although for the price of $399, some may wonder if the Quest will have enough power to justify the $200 premium over the Oculus Go.

The resolution sits between the Rift and the Quest.

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