The Pico Neo is a mobile VR headset that doesn’t need a smartphone

Yes, it’s like the Samsung Gear VR only lighter in weight and comes in vibrant orange. The Pico Neo is truly standalone.


What’s Pico Neo?

Pico Neo is a new virtual reality headset made and developed in China. This system will enable lightweight and standalone virtual reality experience. It is tethered to a controller, yes wired controller, that in itself have a Snapdragon 820 processor, 4 gigabytes of RAM and a 32 gigabyte storage through a microSD card slot.

It also offers a very impressive 1200 x 1080 resolution per eye with a refresh rate of 90Hz and 102-degree field of view. At par with it’s direct competition.

What’s special about it?

Pico Neo promises a standalone VR. If you’re talking about standalone virtual reality, it would bring up images of a smartphone being inserted to a head mounted display headset. The smartphone is used to power the application and display the virtual images through the headset’s lens. This makes the entire system is wireless but heavy because of the smartphone inside the headset. However, Pico Neo have something else in mind: it doesn’t use a smartphone to project applications to the user like the Samsung Gear VR or Daydream View.

How does it feel to use?

If the virtual reality game demands that you move your head around, Pico Neo headset will reduce the strain on your neck since it is super light compared to the Samsung Gear VR. It is also very responsive and the independent controller comes very useful in shedding off some weight to the headset itself.

Overall, it’s a very comfortable and not so cumbersome VR experience.

Is there anything bad to report about the Pico Neo?

There are some negative things to talk about the Pico Neo and it revolves around the corded controller. Standalone VR often entails wireless controllers. Look at the Daydream View and the Gear VR, all wireless. Even PC VR like the Oculus is pushing for a more wireless option in the next versions.

The next weird thing about the Pico Neo is the custom Android OS that makes it run. This would mean that the headset would have a different set of games out of the Android ecosystem coming out with the device’s release.

One last thing is price. Pico did not release the final prices for the Neo just yet. However, earlier reports put the Neo’s entire package at around $550. With just the headset only will set you back $300 if you want it tethered to a PC.

Still, it’s refreshing to see a company rethinking how standalone VR can and should look. Plus, with its eye-popping orange color scheme, the Neo is a nice-looking device. The company says it doesn’t have a release date locked down yet, and its developer version is only available to those in China. But with a recently opened San Francisco office, Pico is looking to expand.

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