Facebook’s next big move in virtual reality is called Oculus Touch, a pair of wireless controllers that bring your hands into VR using the Oculus Rift headset. With the Rift having launched earlier this year, the question remained: When is Oculus Touch going to lauch and how much will it cost?
And now we know: Oculus Touch costs $199, and starts shipping on December 6.
Here’s what the final version looks like:
The controllers enable you to do stuff like grab virtual objects and push virtual buttons (say, in a virtual elevator?), as well as gestures like pointing, thumbs up, and waving. Beyond buttons and thumbsticks, the Oculus Touch controllers are equipped with motion and touch sensors that enable a surprising amount of fidelity.
In short: while they look strange, it feels surprisingly natural to use them as “hands” in VR.
Facebook initially planned to release the controllers alongside the Oculus Rift headset earlier this year, but they were delayed to make, “many changes that make Touch even more comfortable, reliable, and natural.” The delay pushed them to the latter half of 2016; Oculus VR CEO Brendan Iribe announced the price and release date on Thursday during the company’s annual “Oculus Connect” developer event.
Alongside the controllers, a second Oculus Camera is included in the package, which enables the computer powering the Oculus Rift to “see” your hands as well as the headset, and to track them all in real-time. Facebook is selling extra cameras separately, so that you can connect three and enable “room-scale” VR – which is just what it sounds like, where you can move around an entire room within VR.
Take a look at Oculus Touch in action right here: