Samsung’s Gear VR will join some of its virtual reality contemporaries with the announcement that it will soon get a controller to go along with the Oculus-powered headset.
Announced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week and detailed on Oculus’ website, the controller includes a touchpad and trigger, as well as home, volume and back buttons, that will make it easier to navigate apps and do things like aim, shoot and grab items.
Last year, Oculus released its much-anticipated Touch controllers for the Rift headset. The Rift was the first full-powered VR headset using today’s technology, but it was soon joined by the HTC Vive as well as Sony PlayStation VR, both of which launched with controllers, and others.
Oculus and Samsung have stayed mum on a release date for the controller, as well as information about pricing. But we do know the controller will be compatible with existing headsets and available for purchase separately.
The Gear VR team is working on more than 70 new games that take advantage of controller capabilities, and Oculus said it will soon open up the software development kit for the controller, allowing others to build their own experience on the platform.
In addition to the new Gear VR controller, Samsung also revealed the release date of the Galaxy S8 smartphone and unveiled a pair of new tablets at MWC. Samsung is exhibiting some of its latest virtual reality innovations conceived in the company’s C-Lab at the mobile showcase. Here is a look at those projects:
- Relúmĭno: An app designed to help visually-impaired people read and watch TV with more clarity.
- Monitorless: A pair of sunglasses that connect to smartphones, computers and other devices, allowing users to view content through the glasses, without a screen.
- VuildUs: An app that lets users scan in their homes and plot out how a new furniture purchase would look in a room.
- TraVRer: A 360-degree virtual travel app that is designed to give people a preview of a trip, or allow them to reminisce about past experiences.