Virtual reality technology is making further steps into the mainstream consumer market, and back in January, Lenovo revealed its own VR headset. It was unveiled as a less expensive alternative to headsets such as the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. However, no release date has been announced on that occasion, with the company only saying it would launch later this year. The release timeframe for the Lenovo VR headset has now been narrowed down following a Twice interview with Lenovo’s VP of Consumer Business in North America, as Mike Abary said that Lenovo’s virtual reality headset would be available for the back-to-school period. While this doesn’t give a precise date, it does mean that its release should be scheduled between the middle of July and mid-September.
The VR headset that Lenovo showed off earlier this year was a prototype bearing the Windows Holographic logo but so far the name of the device has still not been confirmed. Its price tag was touted as one of the main selling points of the device, as unlike high-end VR headsets that were released so far, it was anticipated that Lenovo’s head-mounted display would be priced at less than $400. The design of the headset appears to be more similar to the PlayStation VR than the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, and rather than resting on a user’s nose, it uses a hinge to attach itself to a solid head strap. That means the eyepiece can simply be flipped up when users want a look at their surroundings, instead of having to rest it on the forehead or completely remove it. Another benefit of the Lenovo VR headset is that it weighs only 350g and is much lighter than headsets from other manufacturers. Specs of the device include two OLED displays (each with 1440 x 1440 resolution) and two front-facing cameras. However, not much else was revealed about the gadget and it’s currently unclear whether it will utilize motion controllers.
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In the same interview with Twice, Abary also discussed the decline of PC hardware sales and the need to attain growth for the company through other innovative efforts. Areas mentioned in this respect aside from VR products included Lenovo’s gaming business, its new VR-compliant gaming desktop, new notebook plans, and its upcoming Lenovo Smart Assistant wireless smart home speaker. Lenovo is just one of the many companies looking to drive growth with newer technologies in this manner. For example, Sony recently discussed plans to focus on VR solutions over the next few years, conceding that the company is no longer in the race to gain any significant smartphone market share from the likes of Apple and Samsung.