And let’s take you through the latest status.
Hardware is finalized, shipping in April to Kickstarter backers
This year, 569 Portal devices in various versions and configurations have been produced by Pimax. These devices have been used for internal testing, external testing, and content developers (for content migration). Now, Pimax has finalized the hardware, and mass production is starting. All the Kickstarter Portal orders are expected to be completed and started shipping to customers in April 2023. This includes the VR headset.
Software, known areas for optimization
Since the Portal offers a 4K resolution and 144 Hz refresh rate, it needs proper heat dissipation to maintain the system temperature. Pimax is working on lowering the noise and temperature caused by active heat dissipation. Before shipment, Pimax will ensure that the Portal is relatively stable and will continue to improve this through software updates.
Pimax is working on optimizing the power consumption of each component to improve battery life. Again, the 4K resolution and 144 Hz is at the heart of this, as it requires more power than a 1080P screen, and we’re still busy optimizing the battery performance of Portal. As with the heat dissipation, Pimax will ensure that Portal is relatively stable and will continue to improve this through software updates.
The controllers of the Portal connect magnetically with the main body of the console. When connected (‘clicked on’), the controllers use magnetic pins to ensure a super-fast connection. When separated from the console, the connection is wireless. This wireless connection is still open for improvement. While our proprietary protocol wireless connectivity is stable, we will continue to improve this as well.
The 6DoF tracking feature in VR mode is almost complete, and both head & hand tracking are good (see MRTV’s review). However, there is a rare occurrence of the tracking being stuck (tracking freeze), and Pimax has set up a particular group to resolve this issue, and we’re confident we can solve this before shipping.
Pimax Portal is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR2 processor, which delivers impressive performance in most games. However, some of the games experienced SDK-related issues during the porting process, and Pimax engineers and content providers are working hard to resolve this issue. By the end of May, there will be more than twenty all-in-one VR games available in Portal VR mode.
The PCVR functionality of Portal is still under development. In the future, the QLED version of Portal will support native PCVR using an HDMI cable, while other versions of Portal will support streaming PCVR using WIFI/USB.
Our business department is also actively working on building cooperation with VirtualDesktop to enable efficient PCVR streaming through VirtualDesktop software.