Virtual Desktop, the app which lets you view your PC’s monitor inside VR, is launching for Oculus Go and Samsung Gear VR this Thursday.
The app will be priced at $9.99 and will also be an Oculus Quest launch title when that headset launches next year.
Virtual Desktop was released for PC VR in 2016. It was created by a single developer, Guy Godin. The new mobile VR version of Virtual Desktop is a little more complex than the original. Since an Oculus Go or Gear VR isn’t connected to your PC, your desktop’s view has to be streamed over WiFi. When you first launch the app, you’ll be prompted to download the streamer service onto your PC. You can do this for as many PCs as you like.
The app lets you access everything on your PC. You can watch movies, browse the web, or play games. The VR controller will act as the mouse pointer, but the app also supports Bluetooth mice, keyboards, and even gamepads – they’ll all work just as if they were connected to the PC. That means you can type on your PC or play games from anywhere in your home.
Unlike most VR apps, Virtual Desktop was written natively in C# using OpenGL and the Oculus SDK. Godin claims that this achieves better performance and longer battery life than if he had used a game engine like Unity or Unreal Engine, because those have unnecessary overhead. While this was only important while gaming in the PC version, for mobile VR this could be the app’s unique selling point over competitors like BigScreen, since battery life is crucial on mobile devices. Our initial tests show that over two hours of streaming is possible on Oculus Go.
Virtual Desktop has been one of the most anticipated app launches for Oculus Go. A reliable, high quality and low latency desktop streaming app has felt missing from the Oculus Store. On Thursday, you’ll finally be able to merge the power of your PC with the portability of mobile VR.