What a difference a few (ok, ten) months make. Last April, Huawei announced its first VR headset at a conference in Shanghai. I called it a "me-too headset" and a "dead ringer" for the Samsung Gear VR and was generally a bit meh about the prospect of another mobile VR app store.
Fast forward and Google has just unveiled a very similar looking Huawei VR headset as the second Daydream mobile VR device. Details are pretty non existent apart from the fact that you slot your phone in for display and processing (obvs), the field of view is 95 degrees (pretty much the same as the Gear VR's 96 degree FOV) and it has an adjustable focus wheel "so it can be used without eyeglasses".
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It does look very similar to the last gen Gear VR and - personally - that's a great thing and a genuine difference to the first Daydream headset. I found the Daydream View to be uncomfortable when secure or else comfortable but letting light in around my nose, due to the shape. No such problems with the Gear VR.
There's no release date or price yet either. That said, if this is the same or a tweaked version of the headset Huawei showed off in China, then we can expect it sooner rather than later. Perhaps Huawei's own VR app store (set to boast hundreds of games, thousands of movies) was only ever meant to service China while the rest of the world gets Daydream.
If it is a similar device, we can expect low 20ms latency, a blue light filter to help protect our eyes and 3D audio for devs to take advantage of, though wait for confirmation on those.
The touchpad appears to have disappeared and in the press pic, the Huawei VR headset is pictured with the handheld Daydream motion controller.
In the same blog post, Google confirmed the news out of CES that we will soon have four more Daydream-ready phones to join the Pixels and Moto Z too: the Asus ZenFone AR (also Tango enabled, hence the name), the ZTE Axon 7 (the affordable option) plus the Huawei Mate 9 Pro and Porsche Design Mate 9.
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