Samsung today announced the fourth version of its popular Gear VR headset with improvements designed to make it more comfortable to wear while also ensuring that it’s compatible with additional smartphones, including the company’s new Note7 device. Preorders for the updated virtual reality headset begin on August 3 and it’ll go on sale to the public on August 19.
Among the latest upgrades include a wider field of view — from 96 degrees to 101 degrees. The aesthetics of the Gear VR have changed, with a new midnight blue exterior and black interior. Samsung has also changed out the head straps so it’s longer and added better padding.The touchpad on the side of the headset is now smoother instead of being recessed, making it easier to use. Samsung said that you can also now simply tap a button and immediately be transported back to the Oculus Home screen, something users have been requesting from the company. The headset is even slightly lighter than the previous version coming in at 312 grams versus 318 grams (without a smartphone). In fact, the entire dimensions are different: The last generation was 201.9 x 116.4 x 92.6 mm while this time around it’s 207.8 x 122.5 x 98.6 mm — it’s wider, longer, and taller.
And since the new Gear VR supports the Note7, that means the headset also features a USB C charger, which is different from previous iterations which contained a microUSB charger. But don’t worry if you don’t have a Note7 because this new Gear VR headset contains an adapter that allows you to switch between microUSB and USB C.
Word first spread of a Gear VR successor in July after it was discovered a new model was on Samsung’s support site. The company has seen some pretty good adoption in its virtual reality technology as more than 1 million people use the device. This latest iteration comes just less than a year following Samsung’s last release, marking the first consumer VR product to go on sale.
Smartphones that work with the new Gear VR include the Galaxy Note7, S7 and S7 edge, Note5, S6, S6 edge, and S6 edge+.
Pricing for this Gear VR have not been released, but previous iterations have cost $99 so it’s likely to be around there.