Samsung’s new Gear VR includes Oculus gesture controller

New 2017 model Gear VR comes with new battery-powered touch controller.

Samsung has announced an updated Gear VR headset and controller combo at its Mobile World Congress press conference in Barcelona, Spain. The new 2017 Gear VR comes with a Daydream-style controller that allows for touch input, as well as pointing and dragging, tilting and shooting within the virtual world.

The headset itself looks near identical to the previous Gear VR, released alongside the Note 7 in late 2016, right down to the optics of the lenses and the dimensions and weight. Like that model, the new Gear VR supports the Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S7, S7 edge, S6 edge+ and Note 5.

So it’s the controller that’s the big deal here, enabling new experiences in Samsung’s VR platform. As well as the touchpad mentioned, you’ll get a trigger button, alongside home, back and volume keys, and magnetic, accelerometer and gryo sensors. It’s powered by AAA batteries, which will last 40 days based on an average of 2 hours use per day.

What’s more, it’s surely no coincidence that a new Gear VR is landing just a month or so out from the expected Galaxy S8 launch. Samsung points out that it’ll work with supported USB Type-C devices, of which there aren’t any right now.

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