With the Pico 4, the Chinese company wants to anticipate the Meta Quest Pro and gain a foothold outside of China. While the Pico Neo 3 Link presented in May is still a modified business device, the Pico 4 is aimed directly at end customers and is intended to be an alternative to the Meta Quest Pro.
Thinner and lighter with pancake lenses
After the first manufacturers such as HTC had already shown VR glasses with so-called pancake lenses with the HTC Flow, Pico delivers the Pico 4, the first fully-fledged VR headset designed for games with this type of lens. In addition to the eponymous flat design, these lenses potentially provide further advantages in the area of image sharpness and possible field of view.
In addition to the new lenses, Pico also upgrades the display used, which now shows 2,160 x 2,160 pixels per eye, beating both the Oculus Quest 2 and the Pico Neo 3 Link. As with the Neo 3 Link, the official refresh rate is either 72 or 90 Hertz, but in an experimental mode 120 Hertz is also possible and can probably be expected for the Pico 4 as well.
With Snapdragon XR2, 8GB RAM and up to 256 GB storage
The pixels are powered by the Snapdragon XR2, which is close to the Snapdragon 865 and, according to Qualcomm, has at least twice the computing power of the Snapdragon 835 installed in the first generation of the Oculus Quest. According to Qualcomm, the specification for twice the computing power applies to the performance of the GPU and CPU, while the pixel throughput in the video area is quadrupled and the AI performance is even described as a factor of 11. Pico relies on 8 GB LPDDR4X for RAM, which is operated at 2,133 MHz. The Meta Quest 2 has to make do with 6 GB here. You can choose between 128 GB and 256 GB of storage.
In addition, the Pico 4 can also be connected to the home computer via Wi-Fi, access its computing power and serve as a SteamVR headset. There is no information yet on a possible cable connection.
New controllers and an additional camera
Pico Interactive sets the inside-out tracking with help of four wide-angle cameras and also follows the supplied 6DoF controllers. In addition to the tracking cameras, the headset offers a front-mounted 16 MP RGB camera, which should ensure better see-through implementation.
Pico also wants to have improved both the design and the functionality of the controllers. The new alignment of the tracking ring should be less disruptive when both hands are held close to each other. There should be a potentially noticeable improvement in haptic feedback, at least according to Pico itself. If Pico were to set itself apart from the other providers, that would be welcome, since most controllers hardly come out above the cheap smartphones of ten years ago when it comes to haptic feedback.< /p>
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The software makes the difference
As with the Pico Neo 3 Link, the Pico 4 can impress on paper and offer competitive performance to Meta's VR headsets, this is different in terms of software and the ecosystem around it.
Facebook (Meta) offers a gigantic range of software with exclusive titles and future experiments like the Metaverse, while Pico Interactive is talking about over 200 apps that will work natively on the headset at launch. Experience has shown that this will not be 200 top titles.
In the past, Pico models could also be used as SteamVR headsets without an account. The Meta Quest 2, on the other hand, is still not officially available in Germany due to data protection concerns. In addition, according to Pico, it should be much easier for developers to publish apps in Pico's App Store than it is with Oculus.
Pricing and availability
Pico says members of the European Neo3 Link beta program can pre-order from September 23rd, while everyone else interested has until October to register be patient An RRP of 429 euros is given for the version with 128 GB of memory.
ComputerBase has received information about this article from Pico Interactive under NDA. The only requirement was the earliest possible publication date.