At Google I/O today, the company announced it's expanding its Daydream VR program from the existing phone holster to a new platform based on standalone headsets, complete with positional tracking. Qualcomm is working on a "reference design" for the generalized platform, while HTC and Lenovo will have the first consumer units ready for later in 2017.
On stage, Google VP for VR Clay Bavor said, "We asked, how can we take the best parts of smartphone VR and create a kind of device with an even better experience."
Unlike the existing Daydream holster, which is just a felt-covered, head-mounted container for smartphones, the standalone Daydream headsets have "everything built right in: no cables, no phone, certainly no big PC," said Bavor. This lets Google and hardware makers customize the displays, optics, and sensors to be perfect for virtual reality, he said.