What you need to know
- HP, Microsoft, and Valve are working on a next-generation VR headset for SteamVR and Windows Mixed Reality.
- This new headset is known as the HP Reverb G2 and is said to be a new standard in VR.
- Little information is available, but the short press release teases significant improvements in comfort and immersion.
Seemingly out of left field, HP, Microsoft, and Valve announced a joint partnership to develop the next generation of VR headsets for PCs everywhere. The short press release sent out includes a 15-second teaser video that showcases the front of a headset that looks like a modified HP Reverb.
Based on the announcement and the design teased, it looks like this new next-generation VR headset is going to be called the HP Reverb G2. The press release notes that folks can head to HP.com/Reverb to sign up for notifications when more information is available.
Little information has been given alongside the announcement other than platitudes, but the platform of "no compromise" has been declared and it sounds like HP, Valve, and Microsoft are going all-in on a product that should support Windows Mixed Reality and SteamVR, just as the current-generation HP Reverb headsets do. It also appears that the HP Reverb G2 has at least two cameras on its front, but it's not clear if there are additional cameras to support inside-out tracking. The announcement proclaims that the new Reverb is set to deliver a better experience than ever, but doesn't provide any real specifics.
We can surmise a few things from the teaser, but many of them are guesses until more solid information is available. Valve's off-ear headphone design looks like it may have made its way to the HP Reverb G2, as the teaser image shows headphones that appear to hover just off to the side of the headset in the same way that the Valve Index's headphones do. There's no word on pricing or availability of the HP Reverb G2 just yet.
Today has a day of many surprises, for sure. The release of Half-Life: Alyx brought about an era that many gamers have been looking forward to for years. We haven't seen a Half-Life video game release in well over a decade, and Valve's move to make Alyx a VR-only title was as surprising to as many people as the existence of a new Half-Life game itself. This new tease for the next-generation of VR headsets is certainly another surprise, and it means there seem to be plenty of exciting new releases on the horizon.
Half-Life is back!
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Half-Life: Alyx is a bold comeback for Valve's previously-stagnant AAA franchise, described by Valve itself as its "flagship VR game."
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Nick started with DOS and NES and uses those fond memories of floppy disks and cartridges to fuel his opinions on modern tech. Whether it's VR, smart home gadgets, or something else that beeps and boops, he's been writing about it since 2011. Reach him on Twitter or Instagram @Gwanatu