In late May, WalkingCat Tweeted out an image of the HP Reverb G2 the week before the official reveal.
New Color, New Strap, Wider Camera Placement?
This new headset looks to have ditched the all-back color of the current Quest for a two-tone look, with a white exterior but black facial interface and controller surfaces. The fabric material on the side of the current Quest looks to be replaced with plastic.
The narrower side depth of the headset pictured indicates it’s slightly smaller than Quest, which hopefully means it’s lighter and thus more comfortable to wear.
Oculus Go and Oculus Quest
The strap looks to be a new design too. To adjust the Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, or Oculus Quest for your head you need to use the elastic straps on the sides and on the top. Making three separate adjustments like this can be confusing for some, and lead to an improper fit.
A top strap is still visible on this new headset, but the side straps look to have been replaced by a singular rear adjustment, akin to the Valve Index and PlayStation VR.
The cameras at the top corners have moved more to the side. This could result in a wider tracking range for these new Touch controllers, which Facebook’s other VR headset (Rift S) currently achieves through cameras on the side of the main body.
The bottom tracking cameras seem unchanged in position.
No IPD Slider?
There is a lens separation adjustment slider on the bottom of the current Oculus Quest, but that’s not visible in the leaked image. The volume buttons are still visible, but there’s now an empty space on the other side.
The distance between peoples’ eyes (called Interpupillary Distance) varies, and this matters for giving them a visually comfortable VR experience. If the center of the VR lens is too far away from the eye, the user may see a blurry image where static objects don’t appear fully solid.
Positioned at the bottom of the headset, the current Quest’s slider lets you move the lenses to match the separation of your eyes.
Facebook’s Oculus Go did not have this feature, nor does the currently sold Rift S. When Rift S launched, Facebook told us the lenses are “Best for users between 61.5 and 65.5mm” IPD, which equated to just 46% of men and 43% of women in the largest publicly available IPD dataset.
The leaked image is of course only one angle. It’s possible Facebook is using a new lens adjustment mechanism with a control on a different side of the headset.
What Do We Know?
A new Oculus Quest wouldn’t be a complete surprise- evidence has been building throughout the year.
Back in March, the official Oculus Developer website leaked the codename for a ‘Del Mar’ standalone headset with a developer early access program. A reference to ‘Oculus Jedi Controller For Oculus Del Mar’ was also discovered in the Oculus Mobile SDK.
In April, Gerald McAlister of RGB Schemes found a driver for the ‘Jedi’ controller within the latest firmware for the consumer Quest. We analyzed the driver and compared it to the current Touch driver, finding it may refer to a new controller with the same input scheme, but potentially improved tracking, haptics, and finger sensing.
The controllers in WalkingCat’s image clearly still have a thumbstick and buttons, but the other potential improvements can’t be checked with just an image.
In May, Bloomberg reported Facebook was working on a new Quest which could be 20% lighter and physically 15% smaller, with a refresh rate of 90Hz. The report also suggested the new headset would use cheaper materials and slightly improved controllers.
The leaked image seems to agree with Bloomberg’s reporting. Finally, just last week, Japanese publication Nikkei reported that a new Oculus headset entered production this month, with production goals of 2 million units.
As with all leaks, take this image with a huge grain of salt. Even if it is real, it may not reflect the current state of the product. We’ll keep a close eye on Facebook in the coming weeks and months to bring you any official information we can find.