Many films produced between the 1970s and the 1990s attempted to deal with the concept of virtual reality. Otherwise known as “VR”, this technology has actually existed since the first computers were invented during the latter half of the 20th century. Of course, it took quite some time before such a notion was feasible in terms of production and implementation. We have now entered into an era that is partially defined by the increasing presence of virtual reality. From 3D videos available on websites such as YouTube to countless games which provide you with a truly amazing perspective, the future is indeed here. This is also why a number of VR headsets have entered into the marketplace over the past few years. What should be considered if you are purchasing one for the first time? Let us take a look at a handful of important metrics so that you can make an informed (and cost-effective) decision.

Physical Characteristics

You may have noticed that some headsets appear o be bulkier than others. This is mainly due to the amount of technology that is present within such a relatively tiny package. However, we need to keep in mind that extremely large models can become cumbersome and uncomfortable. This is why it is a good idea to physically try on the headset in question so that you can determine if it offers a proper fit. How easily can the straps be adjusted, what is the total weight of the unit and might its dimensions be difficult to manipulate within a smaller environment (such as a bedroom)? Addressing these questions is critical before coming to a final decision.

Connectivity, Flexibility and Other Issues

The applications of virtual reality are nearly limitless and this is why certain headsets have been designed to cater to unique needs. Those intended to be used by gaming enthusiasts tend to be smaller and lightweight. Models primarily manufactured for enjoying VR-enhanced videos may be slightly larger, as the anticipated head movements are less frequent.

Also, we should note that many VR headsets are equipped with wireless technology. This is extremely convenient in terms of mobility. While hard-wired versions still exist, these may be problematic; some individuals have tripped over such wires in the past. The only drawback with wireless versions is that they are associated with a limited range in relation to the console or computer. Weigh these two options in order to understand which might be the best solution for your needs.

Compatibility is the final variable to address. It is always best to use VR headsets offered by well-known manufacturers. These are more likely to be compatible with multiple different operating platforms and software packages. Two examples are the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive.

Might there come a day when everyone owns some form of VR headset? While the verdict is still out, there is no doubt that this amazing technology is set to transform the ways in which we interact with the digital world.

Sam Bocetta

Independent journalist. Naval defense analyst. Privacy, security and the right to be forgotten.

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