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Sony admits its PlayStation VR won't match up to Oculus Rift

by Mark Tyson on 11 March 2016, 11:01

Tags: Sony (NYSE:SNE)

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We have been following the development of VR and AR headsets closely here at HEXUS. Of course most of our attention has been upon those devices designed to be PC peripherals. However we have took some time looking at cheaper VR entry level products like Google Cardboard and related hardware, which use your smartphone, as they can give a surprisingly good introduction to new VR apps without splashing much cash.

A device which many think will hold the middle ground and has the potential to outsell many competitors is Sony's PlayStation VR. In an exclusive interview with Polygon, PlayStation executive vice president Masayasu Ito revealed telling info about the headset and admitted for the first time that "Oculus may have better VR".

Until this point the PlayStation VR comparative product performance was really not commented upon. Some thought that this dedicated PlayStation solution, with extra VR processing supplied by a separate, accompanying, Wii-sized processing box, might pull a surprise out of its hardware bag. It might contain some kind of revolutionary new 'neural, quantum, optical, bio-cell, buzzword' processor to give it the edge, but no...

The PlayStation VR processing box is pictured on the right

In the Polygon interview, Ito admitted "If you just talk about the high-end quality, yes, I would admit that Oculus may have better VR. However, it requires a very expensive and very fast PC". The PlayStation EVP went on to put forward the case for the in-house developed headset, "The biggest advantage for Sony is our headset works with PS4. It’s more for everyday use, so it has to be easy to use and it has to be affordable. This is not for the person who uses a high-end PC. It’s for the mass market." Affordability is very important to Sony, so even with its extra hardware, the VR processing box, it is expected to end up cheaper than the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.

As a reminder of the PlayStation VR's key touted hardware specs, Sony is equipping a 5.7-inch 1920 x 1080 resolution OLED display in the headset. The refresh rate, at 120Hz, promises "amazingly smooth visuals," and this is backed up with "super low latency" of less than 18ms, helping to deliver a real sense of presence and comfort.

HEXUS Forums :: 18 Comments

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It doesn't need to be as good/better than the PC VR hardware, it just has to be good enough.

It will succeed or fail based only on one thing, price.

Anything over £300 and it will go the same way as all the other console hardware peripherals.
It cannot be as good. The PS4 is already going to have to turn so much eye candy down to even maintain 720p@30FPS while rendering stereoscopic.
Yay, looking forward to something affordable :-)
Fingers crossed this will be launched with No Man Sky supported.
I do have an Oculus ordered and have no interest in this for me but I genuinely hope it is a success as VR in general needs as many users as possible to get devs behind the idea to get enough apps/gamesto make more people want VR.