With Plutosphere, another cloud gaming service is preparing to revolutionize VR gaming. Is it too early for that?
Plutosphere is a new platform for VR cloud streaming that streams PC VR games to the Oculus Quest via the Internet. No PC or cables required, straight from the router. This is intended to lower the barriers to entry for PC VR gaming and bring high-end VR into more homes.
Required is an Oculus Quest or Oculus Quest 2, internet bandwidth of at least 50 Mbps, and a Wifi-6 router. Support for Windows PCs, iOS and Android, Microsoft Hololens and Nreal glasses will follow at a later date. Through the PC program, PC VR glasses such as Valve Index should also be compatible with the service.
Plutosphere is aiming for an open ecosystem: Steam and the Epic Store are pre-installed and users can use all VR apps purchased from these stores with Plutosphere. The start-up Pluto VR promises full compatibility with all OpenVR and OpenXR apps.
Plutosphere: Registrations now open
Plutosphere runs on the basis of Nvidia’s Cloud XR. The start-up is currently experimenting with different cloud streaming providers, including AWS. The price and payment model have not yet been determined. A subscription model or billing for time-based use are possible. A friend system and support for AR apps are planned for the future.
Pluto’s streaming software will be installed on Oculus Quest via sideloading. Pluto plans to release on Sidequest and the App Lab if Facebook allows it.
Those who want to try Plutosphere can sign up for test runs now on the official website. There do not seem to be any regional restrictions.
Cloud VR Streaming: The Problem of Latency
An alternative to Plutosphere is the cloud gaming service Shadow PC, which has been testing PC VR streaming for a good year. The problem with PC VR streaming is that latency is usually quite high. This refers to the delay between an action and its conversion into VR, as the data has to travel a long way in a very short time.
UploadVR was able to test Plutosphere in advance and writes that the streaming experience is on par with Virtual Desktop. Thus, the latency might not be enough for all VR apps and some users might feel sick from the delay. According to Facebook, good VR cloud streaming is not expected before 2025.
Pluto VR was founded in 2015 and developed a VR communication platform and XR browser Metachromium. In 2017, the startup secured $14 million in Series A funding, with Series B funding planned for later this year. The company has 22 employees.