The Samsung Unpacked media event may have revealed the Galaxy S23 phones and the Galaxy Book3 laptops, but there was some somewhat unexpected news from the press conference today. At the end of the event, Qualcomm's CEO Cristiano Amon and Google SVP Hiroshi Lockheimer went on stage to announce the three companies were collaborating on a new "extended reality" device.
A few more details were revealed in a Washington Post article, Samsung's TM Roh stated that the device will have a chipset made by Qualcomm and a new version of Android developed by Google made for headset displays. He also stated that the device would include partnerships with Meta and Microsoft, but further details were not revealed. As to a launch date, Roh said, "We’re getting there, but we’re not too far away."
Samsung has previously tried to launch virtual reality headsets, including the Gear VR in 2015 with technology made by Meta subsidiary Oculus. However, the Gear VR products never sold that well, and Samsung quietly abandoned Gear VR development a few years later.
Samsung's push for an "extended reality" headset will likely compete with Apple's plans for a similar device. The rumored Reality Pro headset is rumored to be officially announced by Apple as soon as this spring and may go on sale before the end of 2023. However, the rumored $3,000 price tag of the Reality Pro will likely keep it out of the hands of all but the richest of consumers.
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