Oculus Rift Update Could be More Modest Than Previously Planned
Last week, Oculus co-founder Brendan Iribe left the company, and Techcrunch seemed to think that it wasn’t on the best of terms. An “inside source” claimed that Facebook canceled the “Rift 2”, and now a “a source familiar with the matter” is going into more detail. The Oculus Rift’s successor was allegedly supposed to be a “complete redesign” of the original system, but the successor Facebook has planned now is less aggressive and more iterative.
In the wake of the overhaul’s cancellation, the company will be pursuing a more modest product update – possibly called the “Rift S” – to be released as early as next year, which makes minor upgrades to the device’s display resolution while more notably getting rid of the external sensor-tracking system, sources tell us. Instead, the headset will utilize the integrated “inside-out” Insight tracking system, which is core to Facebook’s recently announced Oculus Quest standalone headset. The “Constellation” tracking system on the current-generation Rift offers precise accuracy thanks to the static external sensors that track the headset and Touch controllers. While the Insight system would likely offer users a much more simplified setup process, a clear pain point of the first-generation product, “inside-out” tracking systems have greater limitations when it comes to the lighting conditions they work in and are generally less accurate than systems with external trackers. While Oculus has long led the way on hardware advances, this release could be seen as the company playing catch-up with competitors like Microsoft, which has partnered with OEMs including Samsung, Lenovo and LG to release headsets on its Windows Mixed Reality platform that also feature inside-out tracking as well as higher resolution displays than the Oculus Rift.