Hands-on with the Lenovo Mirage Solo and Camera with Daydream

Bill Rogers
January 10, 2018

Lenovo has announced the first self-contained VR headset based on Google's Daydream platform, called the Lenovo Mirage Solo. Though the Solo first showed up in an FCC filing last month, Lenovo had the headset on display at CES this week and offered more information about the upcoming tech.

The Daydream headset uses WorldSense technology, meaning it requires no external cameras or sensors to track the user's movement in a virtual world.

At its I/O 2017 developer event in May, Google announced it is working on standalone Daydream VR headsets with hardware partners HTC and Lenovo. The Mirage Solo's visor portion was more than roomy enough to fit my glasses, a frequent issue I run into with other VR headsets, and the cushioning was fantastic.

Right now there are two main types of virtual reality headsets, ones that are tethered to PCs and ones that need a smartphone to work. Developed to leverage Google's new VR180 format, the stereoscopic, 3-D camera gives users an easy way to capture high-resolution, immersive video that lets anyone who views it immediately transport to new and wonderful places.

Google is bringing back the camera, yeah, the one you hold in your hand that is not an application on your phone. It also promises a 110-degree field of view, an advanced blur-free display, and up to seven hours of battery life on a single charge.

The Mirage Solo's black-and-white design looks a little like Samsung's Gear VR, but with a headband shape that's similar to the Sony PlayStation VR or Samsung Odyssey. The area that touches your face and forehead is a soft breathable padding with comfort in mind. To learn more about Daydream's VR180 program visit vr.google.com/vr180.

Hands-on with the Lenovo Mirage Solo and Camera with Daydream
Hands-on with the Lenovo Mirage Solo and Camera with Daydream

The problem with most VR headsets goes beyond just being dependent on a separate device. Pictures taken with the Lenovo Mirage Camera are still pretty immersive, and actually look pretty good.

Moving around the device, one side plays host to a power button and a microSD slot that's handy for loading VR180 videos captured by the Lenovo Mirage Camera.

The Mirage Solo will be available in spring 2018.

"Since most headsets bear an excess of weight towards the front, we engineered the headset for a more even load distribution and balance to reduce strain on the wearer", Lenovo said.

What makes the Mirage Camera with Daydream different from both regular cameras and VR cameras is that it isn't a 360-degree camera.

The camera also comes with the Qualcomm Connected Camera Platform, including dual cameras, built-in Wi-Fi, and an X9 LTE cellular modem, the release noted.

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