HP’s doing it. MSI and Zotac are too. Now Dell is showing off backpacks stuffed with gaming computers designed to let you use a virtual reality headset without worrying about tripping over wires.
Dell is showing two upcoming backpack PC concepts at the E3 gaming show this week. One is from a company called Zero Latency, and it’s basically a backpack with an Alienware Alpha compact gaming PC inside.
The other is a new concept that Dell has been working on with AMD.
The Alienware VR Backpack features AMD’s new Radeon RX 480 graphics card which is a $199 GPU capable of handling gameplay at 1440p resolutions. There’s also a battery which lets you run the gaming PC for some period of time without plugging it into a wall jack.
The idea is that you can connect an HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, or similar virtual reality headset and play without worrying about wires dangling from the headset to a PC stationed in one part of your room — because as you move, the wires will move with you. There’s nothing to trip over… except, maybe, for other people in the room or other obstacles.
Darn, the Dell site doesn’t seem to list the “toe tapper fire buttons” accessory, nor even the thermionic reactor extended power pack.
I’d say VR is a perfect opportunity for the LiFi standard. Use your desktop PC but then have the video stream over high bandwidth LiFi to the headset. Use regular wireless standards for controls and whatnot.
a new fad with a very short lifespan?
Among all of these VR/AR techs, I have to say the Vive is technically the most impressive. I checked it out at a Microsoft Store and was blown away. I went into it, not thinking I’d be impressed, and now am considering building a rig that’s powerful enough for it. Moving around physically (as opposed to sitting) and the dual controllers you use with the Vive is the big difference that makes the experience far more real. A lightweight backpack PC would help to enhance the Vive experience, not sure if it will make much of a difference for the Rift and others that don’t use the elaborate laser motion tracking of the Vive.
There’s a limited supply for hardware to build a powerful rig, and its not cheap. Not to mention the limited supply of HTC Vives and its price.
If you can wait, there should be an upgraded HTC Vive and Oculus Rift on the market in 12 months time… and hardware will be much more powerful, efficient and orientated towards the task of VR. Besides there’s no “killer app” or reason to go VR right now.
And you might even be able to choose the VR headset of your choice, and grab the new Xbox One X (Project Scorpio).
Or better yet buy the new PS4K with the PSVR headset… availability wise shouldn’t be a problem and it would be significantly cheaper. And game wise it probably would be better than PC/Steam and Xbox for a good while, if E3 promises are met.
Hey, they’ve convinced people to lease cars instead of buying. This is just something else to put on Mom’s credit card and end up stuffed behind the couch in a couple of weeks. It’s all about enriching the 1% while robbing and dumbing down the 99%. Reagan is smiling down in Hell.
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