Starbreeze's spec heavy ​StarVR headset is now shipping to IMAX VR centres

IFA 2016: This Oculus rival is for real and heading to StarCades around the world
​StarVR headset heading to IMAX VR centres

Acer and Starbreeze are now shipping the spec heavy StarVR headset to IMAX VR centres ready to start taking visitors by the end of 2016.

That's the latest from Acer's IFA 2016 conference where CEO Jason Chen named VR as one of the core businesses of the company in the future. The partnership with Starbreeze is focusing on location based VR entertainment, not at home devices, and the first StarCade centre will open in LA in Q4 (i.e October or later) this year.

Read this: Our first impressions of the StarVR headset

Rob Lister, IMAX's chief business development officer, said we can expect IMAX VR centres - both standalone and "in multiplexes and shopping centres" - in London, Shanghai and New York City by the end of 2016.

Starbreeze Studios CEO Bo Andersson said to Chen, on stage: "The real challenge is building hardware. A couple of years ago we built a prototype but you said you could build it better. We want to create The Matrix."

Starbreeze itself is best known for The Chronicles of Riddick game, but it came out swinging with its VR headset, that aims to take on the big names in VR with an impressive spec sheet. Its latest high profile project is John Wick VR with Lionsgate.

Trouncing the Oculus Rift's specs, the StarVR comes with 210-degree horizontal FOV (and 100-degree vertical FOV) compared to Oculus's 100-degree field, and two Quad HD panels offering a total 5K, 5120 x 1440 resolution. The consumer version of Oculus offers a resolution of just 2160 × 1200.

Chen has previously let slip that VR accessories, such as a haptic vest, could be part of the StarVR experience and that PCs could sit below seats in Starbreeze's venue. Acer is spending big on R&D, filing for over 400 patents last year, in an attempt to get rid of its "low cost" tech image.

Starbreeze has taken StarVR on the road and in January, it announced plans for StarCade VR arcade-type centers, starting with the space in Los Angeles and its OVERKILL's The Walking Dead VR experience this summer.

The Stockholm based studio also went to the Cannes Film Festival showing off a couple of VR experiences including Stephanie Barbato's Cockatoo Spritz to cinephiles. We got a hands on with the headset and tried out the live action VR short so look out for a hands on very soon.


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