If manufacturers want to take their work on the Snapdragon 820 SoC to things above smartphones and tablets, — say, an all-in-one VR headset — then Qualcomm has just laid out a “square one” for them.
The Snapdragon VR820 gives developers reference hardware in designing software and content experiences for consumers who happen to be interested in Snapdragon 820-powered wireless headsets.
The San Diego chip designer hitched with Shenzhen-based manufacturer Goertek to build the device and pack it with four microphones. dual-camera eye tracking and two external cameras to support six degrees of movement freedom (three dimensions of linear movement, three dimensions of radial movement) and app superimposition. The sensor lot includes a gyroscope, accelerometer and magnetometer.
The total resolution of the AMOLED screen per eye is 1440 x 1440 with refresh rates adjustable up to 70Hz. The VR820 can handle playing 360° video at 4K resolution with stereo sound and 3D surround sound. Motion latency can get down below 18ms.
All of this sounds practical and not terribly lacking in comparison with heavy-duty wired VR and AR solutions like Vive and even Intel’s Project Alloy. One senior Qualcomm executive told The Verge that the VR820 can help OEMs get to a “closer-to-commercialization product”.
“From our understanding of what some of our competitors are doing, [the VR820] seems to be a much more commercially focused effort,” said Hugo Swart, Qualcomm product management senior director.
Companies can order the VR820 starting next quarter. Qualcomm expects derivative products from companies to come out “shortly thereafter.”