In what is an effort to catch up with Google’s recently released Daydream View virtual reality headset, Samsung is releasing a new version of its Gear VR headset that features a packed-in controller, according to an announcement the company made today at Mobile World Congress (MWC).
The controller, which the South Korean tech giant designed through its partnership with Oculus, adds motion control support to the headset and features a limited array of buttons. Including a controller with every Gear VR allows players to navigate and interact with virtual reality content without having to use the headset’s built-in buttons like with previous iterations of the Gear VR.
The Wiimote-like gamepad features a clickable touchpad, trigger, home button, back button and volume keys. It also includes an accelerometer, gryrometer and magnetic sensors. Samsung’s new Gear gamepad is powered by an AAA battery. The new Gear VR is designed to be used with the Galaxy S7, S7 Edge, Note 5 and Galaxy S6 series of smartphones.
Samsung’s latest version of the Gear VR packs two 42mm lenses with a 101-degree field of view. The company also claims that its Gear VR features improved distortion technology designed to reduce motion sickness even further. Finally, the headset features a strap designed to house the controller when you aren’t using it.
Samsung claims that there are over 70 Gear VR titles currently in development designed to take advantage of the controller. In the face of growing competition in the smartphone powered VR headset space, it’s interesting to see Samsung stick to its Gear VR platform, rather than adopt Google’s Daydream VR operating system.