VR backpack PCs are arriving in time for the VR headset revolution. Developers have been wondering how to connect PCs to VR headsets without users tripping over cables. A standard PC sits still as an immovable object. Users move around when wearing VR headsets, but their range and comfort of movement is hampered by cables. So, HP, MSI, and Zotac have been developing PCs that can be carried on your back.
HP OMEN X and MSI Backpack PCs
HP and MSI have been making PCs with backpacks as the casing. HP are releasing a backpack PC through their OMEN range. The OMEN X will have the performance to run VR programs. The OMEN X team aim to have the PC weigh 4.5kgs. The battery will be removable and the processor an Intel Core i7. HP have put the batteries into a waist strap which should distribute the weight better.
MSI’s offering is called simply the Backpack PC. It looks like something a Ghostbuster would use (Which is probably a selling point for some people). MSI aim to have the weight at 4.5kg and have an Intel Core i7 processor.
The Zotac Backpack PC
The Zotac PC backpack is different in its approach. Essentially, it’s a PC in a backpack rather than the backpack being a PC. Called the Zotac Mobile PC, it weighs less than the MSI or HP offerings at 4kgs. Battery life for the Zotac is about 2 hours.
Backpack PC make it easier for gamers and users of VR headsets to move around, discover digital worlds and complete the level or task they’re doing. Users are able to move in a 360-degree range. Finding the right space to get the most out of a VR headset and a PC backpack may be a challenge for some people, but it is likely to be a worthwhile experience.
The HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and other VR headsets will work with backpack PCs. While this will be an extra cost for some people, there was a chance to use VR headsets a few users would have to upgrade their PCs anyway. Backpack PCs being portable will mean you’ll be able to find somewhere with enough room to immerse yourself in a 3D world and eliminate the need to clean up your clutter before use.
There’s no pricing or release date on the backpack PCs yet.