The idea of a PC specifically designed to be lugged about on your back may seem a bit daft, but when paired with VR the notion suddenly starts to make more sense.
MSI has announced the Backpack PC. The idea is that it will allow gamers to tether their VR headset to a machine that will move around with them, providing a level of freedom never before seen with VR.
Specs have not yet been nailed down, although it will boast an Intel i7 CPU and GTX 980 GPU. And of course players will still be limited by whatever the maximum space is they can successfully configure their HTC Vive to support.
Couple it with other tech, however, and the possibilities become more tantalising.
Admittedly, the solution seems slightly less elegant than simply using a wireless headset, but so far only smartphone based solutions such as Gear VR offer a tether-free VR solution, and they don’t yet offer Vive-like room-scale experiences. In theory the Backpack PC offers the best of both worlds – apart from the inconvenience of having a heavy PC strapped to your back, of course.
This is similar tech to that being employed by in-development VR theme park The Void, incidentally. Other manufacturers are apparently working on similar tech, too, including Aorus and Zotac. The latter is working on a system designed to carry laptops around, which seems a lot more workable.
The Backpack PC will be unveiled in full at Computrex in Taiwan next week.