Wireless VR is the dream, and thanks to the boffins at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), it may soon become a reality.
According to a recent news post from MIT, researchers at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) have developed a prototype called “MoVR,” which can make any VR headset operate wirelessly. The system uses special high-frequency radio signals called “millimetre waves” (mmWaves), that allow for the untethered transfer of multiple Gbps, or billions of bits per second.
“It’s very exciting to get a step closer to being able to deliver a high-resolution, wireless-VR experience,” said MIT professor Dina Katabi via the news post, whose research group has been working on the technology. “The ability to use a cordless headset really deepens the immersive experience of virtual reality and opens up a range of other applications.”
The MoVR technology uses programmable mirrors that detect the direction of incoming mmWave signals, and can reconfigure themselves to reflect the signals to receivers on active headsets. According to PhD candidate Omid Abari, future versions of MoVR hardware could be as small as a smartphone, and would allow for multiple active headsets inside a single playspace, without blocking each other’s signals.
Check out our comparison of price, specs, and features of all of the major VR headsets on the market today, and notice that none of them include the word “wireless.” Also see our HTC Vive review, Oculus Rift review, and PlayStation VR review to see our thoughts on existing wired headsets.
Lead photo credit, MIT CSAIL.