Announcements of developments regarding dedicated VR devices are definitely exciting. However, due to their cost, many people still experience virtual reality through their mobile phones. Fortunately, mobile phone technology is also improving all the time, leading to more accessible VR experiences.
Samsung is a leader in mobile-based VR technology. So, what does their new Galaxy S10 bring to the table?
Can You Have Good VR on a Mobile?
The VR technology in dedicated headsets is all technology pioneered in smartphones. From small but powerful cameras to positional tracking hardware and beyond, VR tech and mobile phones are more similar than we may realize.
Samsung is definitely the industry leader when it comes to mobile-phone-based virtual reality technology. These days, you can use just about any smartphone for AR or VR with the right adapter. Samsung’s Gear VR, however, is regularly ranked among the best VR headsets in the same echelon as Rift or Vive.
This is partially because the headset and remotes work well. It’s also largely because of the shockingly capable VR technology in Samsung phones. That’s specifically the case with Samsung’s flagship Galaxy series.
The Galaxy S10 release is already exciting the fans. Should VR fans be excited about it too?
Samsung announced the S10 in a blog post toward the end of last month. The release details the updates (in comparison to previous models) coming with the much-anticipated phone.
A Better Screen
The first feature described has to do with the screen. In keeping with recent trends, the S10’s screen takes up almost the entire front of the device. The cameras is also behind the screen so it doesn’t disrupt the display. Both of these features bode well for users who plan on doubling their phone screen as a VR viewer. The AMOLED screen also works with HDR10+ video. That’s great for watching regular videos and possibly better for watching VR content and 3D videos. The S10 also cuts down on “blue light”, a form of artificial light that can lead to eye-strain, headaches, and other issues with prolonged use.
The S10 also comes with some pretty intense camera hardware and software. Because cameras are necessary for AR and some VR applications, a better camera could make for a better XR experience. Unfortunately, the release doesn’t mention whether the cameras are designed for these applications or how they might improve the experience.
Updates to the S10 also impact speed and wireless connectivity features like wifi. “Intelligent Wi-Fi” switches between wireless internet and data quickly and automatically. Wi-Fi 6 standard gives Samsung users priority and faster access in areas where many people are using the same internet.
Users need to download more complicated AR and VR experiences, but AR applications and 3D video stream online. Better internet speed and connectivity can greatly enhance these experiences.
Features Specifically for Gaming
Many of the features new to the S10 are specifically for gaming. The phone comes with Dolby Atmos audio for better sound quality — a must-have for immersive experiences. Vapor cooling also helps to keep the phone from overheating, especially during longer sessions. The phone is also optimized for Unity — a real-time, cross-platform game engine. The company claims to create around 60% of all XR content, largely due to its mobile ventures.
Getting an S10
The Samsung Galaxy S10 is already available through Sprint but will launch for other providers beginning this summer. The phone is also available for preorder.