×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Samsung Shows Off New Gear VR Headset With Controller

Samsung used its press conference at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona Sunday to show off the next version of its Gear VR mobile virtual reality headset. The biggest change: The new headset comes with an external controller similar to the one that’s shipping with Google’s Daydream View headset.

The new Gear VR controller features a round clickable touchpad, a trigger button as well as a home and a back button for in-app navigation, plus a volume rocker. Samsung is advertising the controller first and foremost as replacement for the touchpad that used to be integrated into the headset itself, touting that users will be able to “point, drag and drop, tilt, shoot” with the device.

Samsung said Sunday that the controller will be compatible with all existing Gear VR apps out of the box, essentially replacing he functionality offered by the existing Gear VR touchpad.

In addition, Oculus is going to release a dedicated SDK to make use of the controller in apps and games, suggesting that future apps will be able to make use of some of the device’s other sensors: Specs sent out with Samsung’s press release also make mention of an accelerometer and a gryometer, which could be used to give the controller more Wii remote-like functionality. More than 70 apps taking advantage of that SDK are already in development, according to Oculus.

Rumors about an external controller surfaced last week thanks to a FCC filing for the device. Samsung said Sunday that it will also update the Gear VR with a new set of lenses for a wider field of view, as well as some kind of distortion correction technology that is supposed to help with motion sickness.

There’s no word yet on when exactly Samsung is going to start shipping the new Gear VR with controller, or how much the company is going to charge for the device. Samsung is expected reveal those details when it officially introduces its next generation of flagship phones, the S8 and S8 Edge, later this spring.

More Digital

  • ‘Bumblebee’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad

    ‘Bumblebee’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Paramount Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Bumblebee.” Ads placed for the sci-fi/action film had an estimated media value of $6.31 million through Sunday for 941 national [...]

  • Kathreen Khavari

    Kathreen Khavari Tapped by Refinery29 for 'Embrace' Comedy Pilot

    Refinery29 will begin production in 2019 on “Embrace,” a pilot from writing duo Kathreen Khavari (“Big Little Lies”) and Chuck Neal. “Embrace” will star Khavari as she comes up with an unconventional solution to prevent her Iranian immigrant parents from having to move back to Iran. Refinery29 bills the show, set in Khavari’s hometown of [...]

  • Outlander Season 4

    Starz Available for $5 a Month for Three Months Through the Holidays

    Starz is having an online holiday sale: The premium cable network is selling three months of its online streaming service for $5 per month, down from the regular price of $8.99 per month. The offer is available to new users who sign up until the end of December. Subscribers also get a 7-day free trial, [...]

  • Meg Whitman and Jeffrey Katzenberg Strictly

    Listen: Jeffrey Katzenberg, Meg Whitman Go Long on Short-Form Entertainment

    One is a legend in the media business, the other in the tech world. But together Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman are intent on bringing the best of both worlds together for their ambitious new venture: Quibi. On the latest episode of the Variety podcast Strictly Business, the dynamic duo shared their battle plan to [...]

  • Alfonso Cuaron, Yalitza Aparicio, Marina de

    Alfonso Cuaron Says 'Roma' Is Better in Theaters

    Director Alfonso Cuaron opted to work with Netflix for his latest film “Roma,” but the decorated filmmaker isn’t discounting the importance of a big-screen viewing. “The complete experience of ‘Roma’ is unquestionably in a movie theater,” Cuaron said Monday night at the Egyptian Theater in Los Angeles for the premiere of “Roma.”  The streaming giant did [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content