At E3 2013, one of the presentations that caught our attention more than most wasn’t even a game, at least not in the traditional sense. It was a demo of the new Oculus Rift HD using a Virtual Reality experience in the popular space sim Eve. The demo left us completely impressed and eager to see what the future holds for the enterprising peripheral.
However, despite all of the positive press for the Oculus Rift HD, the team behind the VR headset are already thinking about the next step after HD: 4K. In fact, the folks at Oculus have apparently already begun exploring the possibility of an Oculus Rift headset that projects 4K resolution.
At the Gaming Insiders Summit, Oculus CEO Brendan Iride confirmed that his team would love to up the resolution on the current Oculus Rift headsets. It’s not the only thing on the to-do list of Oculus improvements, but a 4K-resolution version is certainly in the early stages of planning.
4K Resolution is considered the “next step” for HD video — a tremendous step up from 1080p. Many theaters, for example, have been outfitted with 4K projectors, which are capable of delivering an impressive clarity. 4K TVs, on the other hand, are still far too expensive for the average consumer, and, for that matter, there isn’t much 4K content available, if at all.
The same is true for video games, which are just now getting to a place where 1080p at a constant 60 frames-per-second is the expected norm. So, while Oculus might be shooting for a 4K headset, it might be a few years before 4K video game content becomes available.
It’s a bit strange to think that before the Oculus Rift HD headset even starts shipping, there is already talk of a headset with even better resolution, but such is the case with technology these days. If it isn’t top-of-the-line, or approaching top-of-the-line, then many consumers aren’t interested.
At the same time, there are several kinks to be worked out with the Oculus Rift HD to make it appealing to a casual audience. Although we never experienced it, many Oculus users have noted a disorienting feeling when using the headset in certain instances. It’s mostly based on context, but apparently this “simulation sickness” is something the folks at Oculus are working to make less of an issue before releasing the headset into the wild.
And speaking of the Oculus Rift HD’s release, Iribe hopes to have the headset available soon. We know that means some time next year, but we don’t have any more indications beyond that.
One thing is for sure, though, the Oculus Rift is more appealing after hands-on use. We came away believers after the Eve VR demo, and we suspect many other gamers will find the headset’s capabilities appealing if they could go hands-on with the peripheral.
Do you think Oculus is getting a little bit ahead of themselves with talk of a 4K-resolution headset? Will you be buying an Oculus Rift HD whenever it goes on sale?