The third installment of Samsung's Gear VR headsets may soon be launched commercially, according to the company's co-CEO, J.K. Shin. Speaking on the sidelines of the company's 'Unpacked' event in NYC where it announced its new phablet flagships, Shin revealed that the next generation of the company's virtual reality headsets may not be far away from a commercial launch. He however refrained from divulging any other details, saying instead that the launch date will be "a surprise". While the company has traditionally paired the previous two iterations of its VR headsets with its flagship smartphones, some observers feel that market demand will compel the tech giant to make its upcoming VR headsets compatible with many more of its handsets available in the market, rather than only one or two, as has been the case thus far.
With the global smartphone market showing signs of thaw and the tablet market experiencing de-growth, VR has been identified by many analysts and industry insiders as a potentially high-growth market for the recent future. That being the case, many established smartphone OEMs are jumping into the fray with new VR offerings of late, hoping to wrest the first mover's advantage. While Samsung is expected to soon launch the third generation of its Gear-branded headset in association with Oculus VR, HTC and Sony are still fine tuning what would be their first generation devices for the consumer market. While HTC has teamed up with online game distribution platform Valve Corporation for its much talked-about Vive headset based on the SteamVR platform, Sony is also expected to launch its Project Morpheus headset by the end of the year for use with the PlayStation 4 console.
While Samsung's CEO did not provide an ETA on its next Gear VR headset, it's expected the that the company will announce the device at the IFA event to be held in Berlin, next month. Samsung has traditionally launched its Galaxy Note series smartphones at the IFA in recent years, but this time around, Samsung doesn't really have a big bang product for the event, what with the Galaxy Note 5 and the Galaxy S6 Edge+ announcements having been advanced forward to today. The company is however, expected to announce its Gear S2 smartwatch at the event next month.