Most high-end virtual reality headsets being released this year require a high-end, high-price computer to generate the 3-D environments they promise, upping the overall price and essentially leashing the wearer to a narrow range of movement. Toronto-based company Sulon Technologies promises something different with its Sulon Q “wear and play” headset, expected to be released sometime in late spring.
A full computer, running a Windows 10 operating system, will be built into the goggles. “Our device is completely wireless,” says Kibaya Njenga, project manager. “The untethered experience is a lot better for users. They feel like they have a lot more freedom.”
Another interesting aspect of the Sulon Q is its basis in “mixed reality.” Rather than just immerse the wearer into an artificial virtual world, the Sulon Q has a “spatial processing unit,” which uses front cameras to create a 3-D map of the wearer’s real environment and track his or her position in the room. The cameras will also allow for gesture recognition, eliminating the need for a separate controller or gloves to interact with the virtual environment.
The company’s founder Dhan Balachandreswaran had a dream of “living a video game,” with the human body acting as the controller, rather than some external object, Njenga says. “A lot of research and development has been tied back to that vision,” he adds. In addition to being able to play games, however, the Sulon Q can be used as a general purpose computer, since it runs on a well-known operating system, according to Njenga.
Sulon has not yet released a price or exact shipping date for its wearable VR computer, but Njenga says the company expects to announce that and more in the near future. He adds that the company is excited to share its “really unique and really cool” product with the public.