TechRepublic's Senior Writer Teena Maddox met with Samsung's Stephen Hawke at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, to discuss the Samsung HMD Odyssey, a viewing- and new-level immersive experience headset that is part of the Windows Mixed Reality portfolio.
"This is a Samsung HMD Odyssey," explained Stephen Hawke, senior manager of product strategy in the immersive products and virtual reality division of Samsung Electronics America. "It is part of the Windows Mixed Reality portfolio. This is our option that we developed here. With this headset specifically, we have a really great viewing experience. We've got duel AMOLED screens from Samsung on the inside at a higher resolution, really great field of view, but all these lenses here really bring the immersiveness of your content to a whole new level. You've got spatial sounds enabled, built into the headset, tuned by AKG in our partnership with Harmon. You've got mics to access Cortana for Microsoft.
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"We've got several comfort features on here as well, to make it really optimal to use for longer periods of time. With Windows Mixed Reality specifically, this is kind of making it more easy to use for all consumers. This uses inside-out tracking. These cameras on the front actually sense the room around you, and how you move within that environment, to reproduce that within your virtual world. That doesn't require sensors to set up, any complicated, technical set up. Anybody can just attach this to a compatible gaming-level PC and get this virtual reality experience. Then, we've got our controllers here as well, which are designed to be super comfortable, so you use both of them. The cameras on the front not only track where your head is moving, but also where the controllers are moving around in the virtual space," Hawke said.
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"The Windows library has continued to grow. We actually enabled Steam VR platform capabilities as well, with an app within Windows App Store, so we're really excited. There's more content than ever in virtual reality. Obviously, South by Southwest, there's a lot of virtual reality experiences out here that we're excited about as well, but we're looking to continue definitely focusing on this space and bringing some awesome virtual experiences into the hands of consumers everywhere. The Samsung HMD Odyssey launched in November of 2017, and it's available for $499 at retailers nearby, Samsung.com, Microsoft Store, and others," Hawke said."
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Teena Maddox is a Senior Writer at TechRepublic, covering hardware devices, IoT, smart cities and wearables. She ties together the style and substance of tech. Teena has spent 20-plus years writing business and features for publications including People, W and Women's Wear Daily.