From The Wall Street Journal, but via NASDAQ without a paywall:
The Alphabet Inc. unit is developing a virtual-reality headset that doesn’t rely on a smartphone, computer or game console, according to people familiar with the matter. That would be a first in the rapidly evolving field.
Well well well. Just what I’ve been thinking has been needed. But I really expected China to do this first, via Shenzhen. Hey, they still could. They work fast in Shenzhen!
Yet virtual reality still appears years away from widespread adoption, in part because high-end headsets arriving this year require expensive PCs, while inexpensive smartphone viewers can give users headaches.
Google’s planned stand-alone headset appears to aim for a middle ground: a quality experience not tethered to an expensive PC or game console. Still, it is unclear whether many consumers are willing to pony up for another entertainment gadget.
One of the people familiar with the matter said the headset will include a screen, high-powered processors and outward-facing cameras. Google plans to use chips from startup Movidius Inc. that use the cameras’ feeds to track the motion of the user’s head, the person said. Other high-end headsets, like the Oculus Rift, tap the computing power of connected PCs and use external cameras to track users’ motion.
Boldfaced emphasis added by me.
I’m very curious about this. Especially given Google’s past hostility to external card storage for Android devices. It’s going to need gobs of storage unless Google has some sort of web-based streaming VR magic trick they’ll also unveil.