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Are the Oculus Touch controls finally coming?

Some signs point to the controls hitting shelves by the end of 2016.

Oculus has continually promised we would see a 2016 release date for Oculus Touch, its handlebar-like physical controllers that can further immerse users in a virtual world. Announced more than a year ago, the company has already pushed back its release from the first half of 2016 to the second half and there’s still no definitive proof it will hit shelves this year, despite the company’s word and more than 30 games announced said to utilize the controls.

Until now, perhaps. Oculus said they would talk about Touch at the upcoming Oculus Connect 3 Conference, scheduled for October 5-7. Even if the wording is as vague as having “lots more to share about Touch,” this is the first time we have a definitive timeline relating to the controls.

An official announcement and possible pre-order opening in October could put the machine on target for a winter launch. This is further corroborated by an image that appeared on Reddit from poster ThatVRGuy, which showcases a mockup of the controls and advertises a winter 2016 release date. The image was verified to be real by Tom’s Hardware.

A winter release makes sense as a popular release time for video games to coincide with the holidays. An upcoming game Ripcoil, to be released in December, is said to future use of the Touch controllers. While this is all speculation, many signs point to a winter release for the controls.

In July, new buttons for the controls were revealed, showcasing a new ‘Enter’ button, which essentially acts as a Start button on other common controllers. It will also provide both buffered and non-buffered haptic feedback, which means the vibration effects have the capability of changing rapidly.

Published Aug. 7th 2016

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