Unlike the Galaxy S10 family, the Note 10 and Note 10+ are leaving the Gear VR in the lurch
Remember when virtual reality was hailed as the next groundbreaking technology for both the mobile and PC industry? Even though it might feel like an eternity, it actually wasn't that long ago when Samsung unveiled the first edition of its Gear VR headset to pretty great fanfare, while Google tried its hand at something similar with the Cardboard and Daydream platforms.
But although the Google Daydream and Samsung Gear VR product lineups were never explicitly discontinued, they both kind of... disappeared. The most recent Gear VR variant, for instance, has just turned two, and after (discreetly) supporting the Galaxy S10 handset family, it's now dropping its compatibility for the company's newest high-end smartphones. Yup, both of them.
In an official statement issued to the folks over at Engadget, Samsung confirmed the news that was initially shared by Anshel Sag on Twitter, highlighting (once again) its commitment to "innovating in VR and AR" and "deliver incredible new experiences to our consumers." Unfortunately, it remains unclear what this actually means in terms of new hardware and software support, but keep in mind that one of the ways the company is indeed "innovating" in the augmented reality field is through complex camera systems like the one slapped on the back of the Galaxy Note 10+.
That big guy's fourth shooter is a "DepthVision" or time-of-flight sensor that uses advanced AR technology to perform real-time measurements of objects and spaces located in the phone's field of view. Meanwhile, Samsung also sells a so-called "mixed reality" headset for $500, which doesn't need to be paired with a smartphone or computer to work its magic. That might explain why the significantly cheaper but also rudimentary Gear VR, which is practically useless by itself, is quietly and unceremoniously going away.