Technology

Lenovo's Standalone VR Headset - The Mirage Solo With Qualcomm Snapdragon VR

Lenovo's Standalone VR Headset - The Mirage Solo With Qualcomm Snapdragon VR

Design-wise, the Lenovo Mirage Solo looks more like a Windows Mixed Reality headset than any iteration of Google Cardboard or Daydream we've seen.

The Lenovo Mirage Solo offers a dedicated headset that aims to be as portable and easy to use as the Daydream headset, but works independently from a smartphone. This is not a 360-degree camera, instead it does 180-degree pictures. In a written announcement, Google Vice-President of Virtual and Augmented Reality Clay Bavor explains why the new hardware is more immersive thanks to the WorldSense technology developed by Google. Lenovo failed to pinpoint the pricing but did say the Mirage Solo would retail for under $400 and the camera would sell for less than $300.

The Lenovo Mirage Camera sports dual 13MP fisheye cameras with 180×180 field of view that can record video at a 4K resolution. These also sport f/2.1 apertures, so they aren't going to give you insane depth of field like some of the other smartphones on the market right now, but you will get some crisp images. It contains 2GB RAM and 16GB of eMMC2 storage, which can be expanded by up to 128GB.

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More options to get involved with VR experiences could accelerate adoption of this still-nascent technology. It does also support LTE, although Lenovo was quiet about which carriers would support the Mirage Camera (based on the bands supported, likely AT&T and/or Verizon - there's no band 12 here for T-Mobile). Because it's integrated into the device, pixels are nearly indiscernible to the degree that we didn't find ourselves trying to readjust the headset to get a better look. Surprisingly, the Mirage Camera doesn't rely on a host device to do the heavy lifting. A tripod thread is built into the bottom, so it is obvious that Lenovo wants you to take this with you wherever you go. Is VR180 something you could get behind? The other side houses the battery and memory card slots. We expect that the Mirage camera delivers the most optimized video content for the Mirage Solo.

Despite being the cheapest of the VR sets on the market right now, we've seen impressive discounts and bundles for the PSVR headset, cameras and games. Now you'll notice that there is no display, nor a viewfinder on the Mirage Camera, and that is because you'll need to use Lenovo's own app on your smartphone to view images. It's a pretty simple, but very useful camera.

Introducing the product to journalists here on the sidelines of the CES 2018, Matt Bareda, Vice President, Marketing for PCs, AR/VR and Smart Devices at Lenovo said that its rollout in the second quarter would be a "game changer" that will bring in the hands of the users whatever is possible in the computing space.


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