Intel just announced its own virtual reality headset called Project Alloy, a VR competitor to theÂ Oculus Rift,HTC ViveÂ and the forthcomingÂ PlayStation VRÂ headsets. But what separates the Alloy from the pack is that itâs completely wireless (the wire above is for capturing video for the demo) and it should give you complete spatial awareness without all the dongles the Rift and Vive currently require.
It does this using two of Intelâs RealSense cameras to continuously map your environment. It can even map your hands.
Intel calls the idea âMerged Realityâ, essentially combining inputs from cameras around your environment into a virtual world. And Intel was able to pack everything â the processor, sensors and controllers â into one cord-free headset.
During Intelâs demo, however, the RealSense camera didnât seemÂ quiteÂ as fluid as youâd hope, especially if itâs your primary means of reacting to the digital world around you. Intel says that its hardware will be open source in the second half of 2017 (ugh), so the headset wonât be available anytime soon. Intel is also working with Microsoft so Alloy can run Windows Holographic, the softwareÂ which powers Hololens, according to Microsoftâs Terry Myerson. Microsoft says that Windows Holographic will also be released in an update for all Windows 10 PCs next year.