At the Oculus Connect keynote speech today, Mark Zuckerberg unveiled a new standalone virtual reality headset called the Oculus Go. It will launch in early 2018 for $200, with developer kits shipping next month in November.
Head of Oculus VR Hugo Barra noted that they designed the Oculus Go to be lightweight and comfortable with a new mesh fabric on the facial interface. It will feature upgraded lenses from the Oculus Rift headset, with the same field of view but less glare and a fast-switch LCD screen that displays at WQHD (Wide Quad HD) 2560×1440 resolution. Audio drivers will also be built right into the headset.
The Oculus Go is less than half the price of the original Oculus Rift headset, and it comes after both Oculus and HTC have been slashing prices. The Oculus Rift and its Touch controllers were bundled for $400 earlier this year, and HTC permanently dropped its Vive headset from $800 to $600.
Driving the price down is likely a move to get more folks to try out the headset, per Zuckerberg’s goal of getting 1 billion people into VR. The new Oculus Go will also be compatible with all Gear VR titles right out of the box, which is another move to build out a library to attract more people.