The future of high-end PC VR may not require an actual PC

An image of an Oculus Quest 2 VR headset.
(Image credit: Facebook)

High-end PC VR is a demanding sort. You need to invest in a decent VR headset and the gaming PC with enough GPU grunt to play without getting woozy, and it can become a pricey hobby if you don't already own one up to spec. That's where PlutoSphere hopes to help out: The company is bringing PC VR streaming to the Oculus Quest 2.

Virtual reality

(Image credit: Valve)

Best VR headset: which kit should you choose?
Best graphics card: you need serious GPU power for VR
Best gaming laptop: don't get tied to your desktop in VR

That's PC VR games without the PC, essentially. Don't get confused, though, this isn't just wireless streaming from your PC to a VR headset. Whereas today it's possible to play either pared-back standalone VR games rendered on your device or games rendered on your local PC and transmitted via cable or wireless to your headset; this will allow for the latter to be played without a local PC.

How does it do it? PlutoSphere will beam your own library of games to the Oculus Quest 2 headset direct from the cloud (via VRFocus). And powered by Nvidia's CloudXR SDK.

It's the same game libraries that you'd run into on a gaming PC—Steam and Epic Games come preinstalled with PlutoSphere—and that means you have full access to the wide gamut of VR games built for headsets like the Valve Index, Oculus Rift/S, HTV Vive Cosmos, etc. 

You still need a relatively up-to-date home setup to get up and running, however. Specifically, 50Mbps internet and a 5GHz Wi-Fi 6 router.

For most of us, however, it's going to be a question of quality and latency. Perhaps even more so than your regular game streaming service. If PlutoSphere can't deliver both up to par then it's going to make for a disorientating time in virtual space for the user.

As a budding concept, though, it's an exciting one. It'll certainly take the hurdles out of high-end VR in terms of price, especially when paired with the value-oriented Oculus Quest 2 headset, although we've no details on how PlutoSphere intends to monetise its platform just yet.

Right now, you can only reserve a spot in the staggered rollout for the Oculus Quest and Quest 2 that will occur sometime soon.

If all goes to plan, PlutoSphere hopes to roll out to other devices down the line: Microsoft HoloLens, Nreal Glasses, PC, and mobile phones.

Jacob Ridley
Senior Hardware Editor

Jacob earned his first byline writing for his own tech blog. From there, he graduated to professionally breaking things as hardware writer at PCGamesN, and would later go on to win command of the kit cupboard as hardware editor. Since then he's joined PC Gamer's top team as senior hardware editor, where he spends his days reporting on the latest developments in the technology and gaming industry. He also enjoys making short videos for TikTok and believes everyone reading this should go follow our account immediately.