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Thursday, February 23, 2017
Qualcomm To Offer Developers VR Headset Powered By The With Snapdragon 835

Qualcomm is pushing for the development of a new generation of such VR headsets with its Snapdragon 835 chipset as part of a new development kit.

Qualcomm Technologies today announced the launch of its Head Mounted Display (HMD) Accelerator Program designed for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of virtual reality hardware. This virtual reality program is designed to help manufacturers reduce engineering costs, decrease the time it takes to create and ship new products.

Manufacturers will have access to reference design products and choose from a pre-qualified set of components. They have the choice of either building their own HMDs from reference design materials provided, or working with an original design manufacturer (ODM) like Goertek or Thundercomm to modify and the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 VR HMD to suit the manufacturer's commercial needs. VR tracking software from companies like Leap Motion and SMI has also been pre-optimized on the Snapdragon 835 VR HMD to accelerate time to development. Furthermore, the program includes pre-defined quality metrics and methods of testing, accessories and more, to help manufacturers develop and deploy mobile VR HMDs.

Qualcomm's headsets will be based on Android OS but will have their own VR software overlay.

Qualcomm's VR platform could help Android find its way to VR headsets.
Google's plan for VR headsets currently revolves around Daydream, in which smartphones are slotted into headsets like DayDream View. But VR's future appears to be in untethered head-mounted displays, which are self-contained computers and don't need to be hooked up to smartphones or PCs.

Qualcomm plans to show some VR headsets at the upcoming Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

At the show, Microsoft will also start shipping its VR developer kit, which will include headsets that are tethered to Windows 10 PCs.

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