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Intel introduces wireless, controller-less VR headset, Project Alloy

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Project Alloy is Intel's step into merged reality

During Intel's developer conference in San Francisco this morning, CEO Brian Krzanich unveiled the company's addition to the VR landscape — a new, wireless headset that would forgo using controllers, according to The Verge.

Krzanich unveiled the early prototype version of the headset while on stage and showed off a demo of how the headset would work in "merged reality," where users manipulate real-world objects with their hands. Krzanich touted this kind of VR application as the future of communication, entertainment and work. Essentially, users could put the headset on and operate within a virtual reality universe while still being able to use their hands to do other tasks.

"We believe the capability of Alloy and what it introduces is significant," Krzanich said. "It gives the opportunity to merge the physical and virtual world together."

The headset uses built-in RealSense cameras, also developed by Intel, so that they can use their hands within the virtual reality space to do a variety of activities. In the demo, the presenter was able to bend his fingers so he could pull levers and use real world objects to accomplish certain actions in VR. Right now, the two VR headsets available to consumers right now (Oculus and Vive) use wires that connect to a PC as well as controllers. Krzanich said that wires limit the users' ability to enjoy VR outside of the computer space and that desire to be more mobile lead to the development of Project Alloy.

Intel is looking for partners to work with, but said that won't be until late 2017 when the headset and technology are further developed. The company also didn't set a price for the headset or the chip technology, which it is also willing to sell to partners and other developers within the VR industry.