Google dashed the rumor-fueled hopes and hype of many yesterday when it failed to bring any real VR hardware onstage and instead spent much of its time detailing the Daydream platform they would be pushing out with Android N this fall.
Today, the company snuck in an announcement at the end of an I/O VR session that they will indeed be building a real physical headset themselves based on the reference design they showed off yesterday (above).
“The first Daydream-ready headsets and controllers will be rolling out [in the fall] from the reference design,” Google VR VP Clay Bavor said onstage at I/O. “And, by the way, it’s not just going to be partners building from the reference design, we, Google, are also going to build a controller and a headset and make it available.”
Plenty of people expected Google to show off a standalone headset in their keynote yesterday. Maybe it was scrapped at the last second, but given the structure of Daydream and its integration into Android N it appears that Google is fully positioning its VR footing, in the imminent future at least, on mobile VR.
This all isn’t that surprising given the specifications of the controller and the physical form factor of it that we’ve seen in various demos and videos. It would be surprising to see a headset design that differs too strongly from what the company has shown off in their sketch images.