GDC 2019 happened and boy did we get a lot of treats from it. Among those treats was the announcement of the new Oculus Rift called Rift S. The new headset is set to debut this spring and is priced at $399.
The Rift S is set to replaced the original Rift. Apps and games will be fully compatible between both headsets. The Rift S is powered via a gaming PC and will work on both the Oculus PC store and other stores like Steam.
Among some of the upgrades with the Rift S is the screen and lenses. The original Rift has dual PenTile OLED panels with a total resolution of 2160×1200. The new Rift S will use a single LCD panel with a resolution of 2560×1440, the same panel is used in the Oculus Go standalone. With this upgrade that is roughly 40% more pixels and each pixel now has three subpixels instead of two.
When it comes to positional tracking, the Rift uses external USB sensors. The sensors were difficult to use and in order to get a complete 360-degree room-scale you had to purchases a third one. With the new Rift S, there is an onboard camera for “inside-out” tracking.
The Rift S will use 5 cameras and they are in different positions: 2 cameras in the front, 1 on each side, and 1 on top. This will help provide a wider controller for tracking range than the Quest and should eliminate any dead spots.
When it comes to controllers for the Rift S, they are almost identical to the original Oculus Touch but with the tracking ring on top. With this the IR LEDs inside the rings can be seen by the headset. The Rift S also is not compatible with the original Rift sensors.
Computers and cables are relatively the same for the Rift S as it maintains the same CPU and GPU requirements. The Rift S will use longer 5 meter cables with a DisplayPort end. You will still need a 1x USB 3.0 port for the headset but that is most likely the only USB port you need.