Lenovo will be one of the first companies to back Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system as it expands into virtual reality. Just before the start of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, the company showed off what it’s calling the Lenovo VR Headset. Lenovo users can look forward to watching movies and playing games without a complicated setup or special sensors on the cheap in 2017.
Only a prototype of the Lenovo VR Headset was at this year’s big tech show. Decked out in silver and black. The sample Lenovo had at the show didn’t function. With the Windows 10 Creators Update, Microsoft is adding virtual reality support to millions of notebooks and desktop PCs. Since it revealed the move, Microsoft has maintained that its moves in the space will be more inclusive than what others have tried. Per the company, an expensive computer won’t be required to power accessories like the Lenovo VR Headset.
Lenovo is betting on price being a big factor too. The company says that the Lenovo VR Headset – whatever its final name – won’t cost as much as Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. Specifically, the company is aiming for the headset to cost less than $400. The Oculus Rift sells for $599. HTC charges a whopping $799 for the Vive.
Even better than the lower cost, Lenovo has learned from some of the practical issues that devices have run into. All the required sensors and a dual-camera system are built into the front of the device. They’re capable of tracking in six different degrees. That saves users from having to setup sensors and trace their room to get the best VR experience.
The Lenovo VR Headset will simply communicate Windows 10 PCs using a USB cable. The device’s headband keeps the weight of the screen and eye piece from weighing down on your face. As such, it feels lighter and more immersive. The company is also readying content for the accessory’s eventual launch. It demonstrated a VR app that lets users watch movies in a digital theatre and play games that don’t natively have support for VR.
We’re still waiting on lots to be revealed about the Lenovo VR Headset. Despite showing it off, Lenovo wasn’t comfortable discussing a specific release date. It did say that the headset will launch in 2017. Likewise, Microsoft has been quiet about the Windows 10 Creators Update’s VR features, but has committed to a 2017 launch window.