Qualcomm's AR / VR headsets on sale by 2020

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Steven L. Kent
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  • A multifaceted Qualcomm headset prototype

Qualcomm has announced headsets with eye-tracking powered by a very promising smartphone. The company is finally starting to unveil a schedule that should please the impatient.

A simple smartphone to power a high-level helmet in augmented reality or virtual reality? This is Qualcomm's promise, with eye tracking, full 6DoF position tracking and hand movement without controller. Make way for the hybrid which may or may not be autonomous.

A multifaceted Qualcomm headset prototype

We already knew Qualcomm as a player in the stand-alone headset chip market. We had the right to an attempt on headsets for smartphones. However, it seems that for Qualcomm, the objective is to develop a hybrid model, with autonomous headsets capable of being connected to a smartphone or a PC to gain power. An attractive prospect. This equipment will be based on the Snapdragon XR1 chip, unveiled a year ago and which is specifically designed for these uses.

This “reference design” therefore relies on redistributed computing power, between the headphone chip and that present in the device to which it can be connected (a Snapdragon 855). It is therefore a stand-alone headset, with six-axis motion tracking, room scale, hand motion tracking, interaction with virtual objects, Eye Tracking with a Tobii module or even fast-switch LCD screen with a resolution of 2K per eye and a refresh rate of 72 H. We are therefore very impatient to discover this future hybrid headset from Qualcomm.

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