In just a few days, Google will kick off this year’s edition of its popular Google I/O developer conference. We already have an idea of what we should expect from the main keynote of the show, with Android N being one of the likely stars of the show. However, Google will take Android in a different direction this year. Virtual reality is a top priority for the company, various rumors claimed in the previous months, and new evidence suggests a standalone Android VR headset is going to be unveiled soon.
Google already has a successful VR headset that’s also mostly a clever joke. Google Cardboard (above) might be interesting, and very effective, but it’s not a real take on VR from the company.
But a better alternative might be coming soon, both when it comes to software and hardware. Users who have access to the Google Play Developer Console have spotted a new tab next to Android Wear, Android TV, and Android Auto, Android Police reports. The new tab is Android VR, which reinforces the idea that Google is building a better VR hardware solution (see following image).
Earlier this week, a rumor did say that Google has an Android VR headset lined up to be unveiled at Google I/O, which is expected to be “better than Gear VR but not as good as HTC Vive or Oculus Rift,” according to tech entrepreneur Peter Rojas.
Android VR will definitely be announced next week, and from what I’ve heard will be less powerful than the Vive or Rift.
— Peter Rojas (@peterrojas) May 11, 2016
There aren’t any pictures showing the new Android VR device, but Google I/O 2016 kicks off on May 18th, which is when we’re all going to be briefed about this exciting new product.