Currently, there are two basic types of virtual reality headsets: Those that have wires and that offer positional tracking, like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive, which tracks users’ movements in physical space, and those that connect to a mobile phone and don’t have that kind of tracking, like Samsung’s Gear VR or Google’s own Daydream View.
Today, at I/O, Google announced what could be the first standalone VR headset, a Daydream-ready device that will have all the required computing power on board, and that will be able to do positional tracking, all without wires or a mobile phone. Coming “later this year,” according to head of VR Clay Bavor, the devices will be made by HTC and Lenovo. This is a very big step, something that Facebook is also working on, as well as other companies. It will be interesting to see who gets to market first.