Pico Interactive recently launched a consumer-facing VR headset called the Pico Neo 3. Like its predecessor, the Neo 2 Lite, the headset is available in China only. Perhaps the company felt it wasn’t ready to take on the Quest 2, one of the best standalone headsets around, just yet. Nevertheless, in a country where Oculus headsets are banned, Pico certainly has little competition to deal with.
The Neo 3 launched with even more lineups than its predecessor. In addition to Superhot VR that was launched with the Neo 2, several other popular titles such as Red Matter, Synth Riders, Apex Construct, Contractors, and Eleven Table Tennis, about 400 games in total, are now available to Chinese consumers on the Pico Neo 3.
The Neo 3 has gotten several spec bumps, putting it on par with the Quest 2. Like the Quest 2, the Neo 3 is powered by a Snapdragon XR2 processor. It has 6GB of RAM, and 128/256GB of storage depending on the version you go for. The headset has an impressive near 3664 x 1920 LCD with 773 pixels-per-inch, a 75-90Hz refresh rate, and a 98° FOV. The whole device is powered by a 5300mAh battery, which can give users about 2.5 to 3 hours of continuous use.
As for tracking the users’ movements, the Neo 3 has 4 cameras at the corners of the headset to improve the positioning and tracking of the headset, regardless of how dark or light the environment is. The Neo 3 also makes use of SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) technology to achieve a 10 x 10 square meters range. That’s considerably wider than the Quest 2’s 7 x 7 square meters.
With the aid of its four cameras, the Neo 3 now supports hand tracking, allowing users to use apps and games that support this feature. As for apps and games that don’t, the Neo 3 comes with new, improved controllers capable of 6 degrees of freedom, thanks to 32 optical tracking sensors in the controllers. The Neo 3 follows its predecessors with their counterweight design, giving the headset a more balanced feel when worn. It also comes with three adjustable IPD options; 58mm, 63.5mm, and 69mm. These options make the headset comfortable for a wider range of people.
Besides the 400+ apps available on its store, you can also stream VR content from SteamVR, either wirelessly (thanks to its NVIDIA CloudXR and Wi-Fi 6 support), or wired (through a USB-C 3.0 OTG port). The Neo 3 can also run regular android apps should you want to watch a Netflix movie in VR or something. This is possible because the headset is powered by Android 10.
The Neo 3 was launched at approximately $390, before moving to about $420 for its 128GB variant, and $470 for the 256GB variant. Note that these prices have been converted from their original prices in yuan, as the Neo 3 is only available in China.
While the Neo 3 is only available to Chinese consumers, Pico Interactive launched two other headsets accessible to the west, the Neo 3 Pro and the Neo 3 Pro Eye. But unlike the Neo 3, the headsets are targeted at enterprises and businesses.
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