There are several barriers preventing mainstream adoption of virtual reality headsets. First, there's the price. These devices are often quite expensive, which is exactly why some companies, such as Facebook-owned Oculus and HTC, have lowered the costs of their respective gears.
Second, technical requirements. While smartphone-based VR headsets only require a phone to work, standalone ones such as the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift require gaming rigs with a top-tier video card and high-performance chip, which add to the overall cost.
Lenovo and Google are introducing a VR headset that removes those barriers. The Mirage Solo is a self-contained standalone VR headset based on Google's Daydream platform. It doesn't need a phone or a PC — it totally works untethered. Unlike existing Daydream headsets, the Mirage Solo supports 6DOF, which means users can squat, jump, and move side to side, backward, or forward. It lets users walk around a virtual space thanks to inside-out "WorldSense" tracking.
Lenovo Mirage Solo Specs
The Mirage Solo is powered by a Qualcomm snapdragon 835 chip, the same one used in the Samsung Galaxy S8, LG V30, and lot of other flagship phones introduced in 2017. It's got 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of storage, and there's even a microSD card slot. The headset unfortunately doesn't have speakers built-in, but users can plug in standard 3.5 mm headphones to hear audio.
It also has a 5.5-inch display with Quad HD resolution — 1,280 x 1,440 for each eye — which produces sharp, clear images, as pointed out by Engadget. There's definitely some drop in quality at times, but it's far better than smartphone-based headsets out there. It also features a 110-degree field of view, which is really wide.
As for the battery life, it comes with a 4,000 mAh battery, which Lenovo claims should last a solid seven hours of gameplay or video playback. It comes bundled with the standard Daydream controller as well.
Lenovo Mirage Solo Pricing And Release Date
The Mirage Solo will retail for under $400, far cheaper than Oculus's and HTC's offerings. It is expected to ship in the second quarter of 2018 along with the Lenovo VR180 Mirage camera, which works really well with the Mirage Solo — users can insert the microSD card from the camera to view VR material.