Wearable Tech

The history of Samsung's Gear VR virtual reality headset

Samsung's virtual reality headset was planned to work with the Galaxy S4, but the story goes back to 2005.

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Prototypes of Samsung's virtual reality headset that would become the Gear VR. Samsung Tomorrow

Samsung has given us some fresh info on the story behind the Samsung Gear VR headset , which goes back 10 years and was at one point planned to work with the Samsung Galaxy S4 .

In a new blog post, Samsung has outlined some of the Gear VR's history. The Gear VR is a virtual reality headset that you strap to your head, with your Samsung Galaxy Note 4 slotted in front of your eyes. The lenses in the headset create an immersive effect while the game or video is played on the Note 4's high-resolution screen.

The system made its debut in September 2014. But the history of Gear VR goes back to 2005, when Samsung obtained a patent on a headset holding an open clamshell phone. Still, an official team was only assembled when the processing power of smartphones caught up to the power required for VR -- when the Galaxy S4 was launched in 2013.

The S4's full high definition screen wasn't quite up to the job, so Samsung kept working on more than thirty prototypes, improving the device's reaction speed and tracking accuracy for your head movements.

Interest in virtual reality was reignited by the crowdfunding success of the Oculus Rift headset in 2012, and Samsung quickly recruited the team from Oculus. While Oculus has focused on gaming, Samsung wants to allow you to step into photos, movies and videos.

The two companies will continue to collaborate on future products.

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