Have you ever just wanted to escape to a different world? Virtual Reality headsets allow you to do just that. Different VR experiences let you travel across the solar system, fight off pirates and aliens, or watch immersive 360 videos and movies. You have probably heard of some of the most popular Virtual Reality headsets and systems available like the Samsung Gear, PlayStation VR, or HTC Vive, but what is the difference?
There are three main categories of VR systems: mobile based, stationary, and room-scale. Each one has benefits and downsides, and thanks to the advent of VR arcades like Divrge, it is easier than ever to try the best experiences. Keep reading to learn more!
Mobile Virtual Reality
If you already have a smart-phone, you can experience mobile VR. With an inexpensive headset and a free app, a mobile phone can run simple VR applications and 360 videos. Mobile VR is nearly wireless, and doesn’t require a separate processor to run making it more accessible than other platforms. The games and experiences are usually cheaper than the better headsets, adding to the affordability of mobile VR. Examples of mobile VR include the Samsung Gear VR, and Google Cardboard.
However, mobile Virtual Reality headsets have quite a few downsides. Your phone’s battery life is drained at an incredible rate while using a Virtual Reality app. And while most mobile phones can run the required software, many of them have screens that make the scene blurry or are not powerful enough to keep the experience smooth. So, if you want to own a Virtual Reality set, don’t want to spend too much, and have a newer phone, mobile VR is something to consider if there is not a Virtual Reality arcade in your area.
Stationary Virtual Reality
Moving up the ladder of quality, we arrive at stationary VR. The largest competitors here include the Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR. These headsets require a separate processing unit (either a PC or a PlayStation 4, respectively) but provide a much higher quality experience. Users need to be sitting down or standing stationary for these headsets. Using either a gamepad or hand-held controllers, players can interact with their much more vibrant surroundings.
Stationary Virtual Reality headsets still features head-tracking, meaning that it is more immersive than mobile VR, but you still must stay standing or sitting still. And while platforms like the Playstation VR offer nifty gun-shaped controllers and other peripherals, they often are not as accurate. Stationary VR is primarily recommended for people without a lot of space, and while you’ll see it in more cramped Virtual Reality arcades, the best ones feature room-scale VR.
Room Scale VR
Finally, the pinnacle of the VR experience. Room-scale Virtual Reality systems allow you to walk around whatever room you’re in, interacting with the digital world around you. The most popular platform for this is the HTC Vive, although the Oculus Rift does offer some rudimentary room-scale features. The Vive arguably allows for the most immersive experience. It features high quality graphics as well as letting you explore the digital world with your body. The only downside the the HTC Vive is the expense. The Vive requires a very powerful computer to operate and skimping on hardware will lead to a choppy and less enjoyable experience. You really need a top of the line gaming rig to make the experience as seamless and immersive as possible, which can obviously get expensive.
While the Vive is not wireless, the tradeoff for quality and immersion is worth it. Popular games allow players to draw in 3D, fight off hordes of zombies, and even sit on the deck of the Star-Trek Enterprise. If you are looking for the highest quality experience, the Vive is a great option.
Overall, there are quite a few Virtual Reality headsets to choose from. Mobile is inexpensive and accessible, but unfortunately suffers in quality. Stationary is semi-affordable and has better quality than mobile, but restricts the user. And room-scale VR gives the best performance, despite being pricey.
You can get the best VR experience here at Divrge, where we offer the HTC Vive in our virtual reality playground. Come visit us at Divrge to try the best in Virtual Reality!