Intel decided to cancel Project Alloy, its virtual reality headset which the company unveiled in the form of a reference design just over a year ago, the tech giant confirmed in a statement provided to Road to VR earlier this week. The Santa Clara, California-based semiconductor company referred to Project Alloy as “a great proof of concept” which made an efficient job of illustrating what a high-end and untethered VR headset may look like, but noted that the firm made a strategic decision to move on from the product and not commercialize it, labeling a general lack of interested partners as the main reason for the latest turn of events.
The decision to cancel Project Alloy was made earlier this summer and won’t impact Intel’s other endeavors in the VR segment, the company said, noting how it’s still adamant to pursue investments in both VR and AR hardware technologies, as well as related software experiences. No further details on the cancellation of the project have been provided by the tech giant which is presently offering and developing numerous VR services and solutions, as well as touting its contemporary i7 processor lineup as being VR-ready. As part of its confirmation that Project Alloy is no more, Intel stated that it’s still in the process of growing a support framework for VR applications including new reference designs and SDKs that it plans to make available to independent developers going forward. The firm said it will apply many things it learned with Project Alloy on its future VR and AR projects but provided no concrete details on new consumer-oriented hardware it’s developing.
Project Alloy was unveiled in August 2016 as a standalone VR headset which was essentially a head-mounted Windows PC, prompting some speculation that the end price of the product would be extremely high. Intel previously said that the device was to be launched in 2017 and narrowed down its release window to the final quarter of the year this January. The firm has been committing significant resources to VR research and development in recent years but has yet to come up with its own head-mounted display. Current industry leaders HTC and Facebook’s Oculus have both collaborated with Intel on the development of their VR offerings, with more tech giants being expected to join the company’s support ecosystem going forward.