Valve’s Index Headset will be the first VR platform to support VurtualLink

Valve's Index Headset will be the first VR platform to support VurtualLink

Valve’s Index Headset will be the first VR platform to support VurtualLink

VR faces a lot of problems that prevent mass-market adoption on PC, from lengthy setup times to complex cable routing and the high pricing of the headsets themselves. Manufacturers are trying their best to address each of these issues, but it remains a work in progress. 

The USB Type-C based VirtualLink standard is designed to tackle one of VR’s major issues, providing a single cable solution for power, display connectivity and miscellaneous I/O, in theory taking the place of separate power, HDMI/DisplayPort and USB data cables. 

Valve’s upcoming Index VR headset will be the first VR headset to support VirtualLink, but the cable will release as a premium add-on, with the standard headset shipping with a traditional 3-in-one cable solution. This makes sense, given the fact that only Nvidia’s RTX series of graphics cards support VirtualLink at the time of writing. 

The Valve Index’s VirtualLink USB-C adapter will ship separately from the main headset, costing users £36.99 in the UK. This may be worth it for those who frequently unhook their VR headset from their PC, or desire single-cable connectivity for some other reason, but to other such a high price does sound like a lot for a single cable. 

Valve's Index Headset will be the first VR platform to support VurtualLink

 

Turning the Index’s cable solution from a 3-cable setup onto a single cable solution will do wonders when it comes to reducing setup time, but it is worth noting that Valve’s new headset requires users to construct the company’s lighthouse tracking system, which isn’t an easy process.   

VirtualLink will be hugely beneficial for VR headsets that don’t require external tracking systems, as VR headsets with inside-out tracking systems don’t require their users to set up elaborate tracking systems. VirtualLink and Inside-out tracking would make VR headset setup little more than a single cable and a few button clicks away, which would definitely up VR’s convenience factor. 

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