Facebook is possibly looking to develop a standalone oculus virtual reality headset later in 2017, based on a Bloomberg report. The report states that the tentative shipping date of the VR headset is expectedly 2018. The device will function independently without the need to tether it to a smartphone or PC and will be sold under the brand name of Oculus globally, except in China.

Independent VR headset in the making?

According to the Bloomberg report, the Vr Headset developed by Facebook will be carrying the Xiaomi trade name in China and will also run some Xiaomi software as a part of a partnership between the Chinese OEM and Facebook, which extends to manufacturing parts for the headset.

VR that does not require any additional devices other than a headset and wireless VR is a combined goal for both Oculus and Facebook.

In the past, Mark Zuckerberg shared the desire to create a product, which would fall in a mid-point category between the PC-based high-end VR such as the HTC Vive or the Oculus Rift and the smartphone dependent VR as shown by Samsung Gear Vr. However, Facebook is not the only company in pursuit of a standalone VR headset. Earlier in 2017, HTC announced that it intends to build a standalone VR device based on the Google Daydream platform.

Apart from HTC and Facebook, Samsung is also said to be working on an independent VR headset dubbed "Odyssey." Facebook stated that it is working on the wireless iteration of the Rift codenamed "Pacific." This independent device is still under development as the company works on the inside-out environmental tracking efforts.

This device developed by Facebook will resemble the Oculus Rift in terms of looks but will be lighter in weight compared to the current Samsung Gear VR headset. Moreover, the standalone headset will be fuelled by a Snapdragon mobile processor to provide enhanced graphic capabilities compared to the Gear VR.

What about the pricing?

The major point of marketing for this standalone VR headset would be the balance in pricing and performance. Reports state that Facebook may retail this headset for $200, keeping it much cheaper than the more expensive Oculus Rift. This affordable pricing will attract more consumers.

An Oculus spokesperson confirmed that the company is in the process of making many tech investments which are significant. These investments pertain to the VR category. However, as of now, the company does not have a product to launch.

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