A recent rumor from a reliable source of Nintendo information suggests the Switch developer might be working on a VR headset with Google’s assistance.
Nintendo manufactures the Switch gaming console and develops several massively popular games. The creator of Mario might partner with Google on a VR headset, but not as a Switch accessory.
Since Google’s XR headset has been abandoned and Samsung’s XR headset is delayed, Nintendo might be Google’s first chance to launch its rumored XR operating system.
According to Nash Weedle, who previously provided accurate leaks about Nintendo, a prototype VR headset already exists. Nintendo is said to be testing micro-LED displays from Raxium, a company Google acquired last year.
Raxium, empresa adquirida por Google, posee múltiples patentes para “paneles MicroLED de alta resolución rentables y energéticamente eficientes”
Nintendo tras probar esta tecnología MicroLED en su prototipo VR, se podría haber planteado implementar estas pantallas en Switch 2 pic.twitter.com/mAOjsCUzXm
— Nash Weedle “El Analista de Leaks” (@NWeedle) September 4, 2023
The rumored prototype features mixed reality capabilities and cost-effective, energy-efficient micro-LED displays. It will be a standalone device that doesn’t require a console connection.
Weedle adds that this is meant for home use, not in theme parks.
Nintendo’s history in VR
The idea that Nintendo is interested in virtual reality isn’t as unexpected as it might seem initially.
In 1995, Nintendo began toying with VR, launching its Virtual Boy 3D goggles. The Virtual Boy wasn’t really a VR headset. It came with a stand, and the idea was to place your eyes up to the goggles to see a stereoscopic image and 3D play games.
More recently, the Nintendo Labo VR Kit gave the Switch console more VR capabilities, although this was still rudimentary. Like other Labo Kits, it used cardboard construction, and the experience was similar to using Google Cardboard.
Nintendo Switch 2
Most flat gamers expect Nintendo to launch its second-generation Switch console in 2024. It’s unlikely that Nintendo would split its attention away from its primary market to work on a standalone VR headset.
If Nintendo is working on a VR headset, it could be two or more years from launch.