This week Lenovo introduced its latest addition to the virtual reality (VR) market, the Lenovo Virtual Reality Classroom. As the name suggests this is a VR-focused offering designed for education and allows teachers to take students on virtual excursions powered by the Mirage Solo with Daydream VR headset - first announced at CES 2018 - along with Google Expeditions. As the Classroom version of the headset comes pre-loaded with over 700 Google Expeditions experiences, enough Lenovo suggests to account for “nearly every subject.” Each experience will also include what Lenovo refers to as “stopping points” that allow teachers to temporarily break from the experience to answer questions, explain things, or just talk through what the students have just seen and heard.
Lenovo’s Mirage Solo with Daydream, not only runs on Google’s Daydream VR platform but does so without the need for any additional devices such as a smartphone. Resulting in what is essentially an all-in-one (or standalone) VR headset solution. Although these particular classroom-focused packages do also come bundled with Lenovo’s Tab 4 Plus 10-inch tablet. This is purposely included for the teacher as a means to control the overall experience for the students, essentially acting as a remote dashboard as well as an informational portal. Adding to that, Lenovo also includes a Ruckus R510 wireless router, a number of resources (including “introductory videos, consultation with an expert, and monthly webinars for best practice sharing”), customized lesson plans, and an extended (18-month) warranty. What’s more, each package will also include a storage/transportation case for the headsets, while those opting for larger packages will be eligible for a cart.
This is certainly being positioned as more of a professional and/or commercial purchase and therefore the baseline package will cost educational institutes $2,899 in the US (no word on whether this product is becoming available outside of the US at the moment - with the exception of Canada where it is due to launch in the second half of the year). That price includes all of the mentioned accessories and software, along with three headsets and the storage case. The more comprehensive packages will be available with either 10 headsets or 24, although pricing for these have yet to be announced. Lenovo Virtual Reality Classroom is scheduled to become available in the US in April.