0.7 is a major release of the PC SDK: it includes architecture changes that bring increased stability and more reliable low-latency performance across recommended hardware through a new, more robust ‘Direct Driver Mode’.
However, as a result of these underlying changes, the 0.7 runtime won’t support applications built with SDK 0.5 or earlier, including all current content built with Unity 4.x. This means the majority of existing Rift-ready games and applications will need to be updated to 0.7 or 0.6.0.1 to work with the new runtime.
The major new changes are outlined below:
Direct Driver Mode
As part of 0.7, Oculus have removed ‘Extended Mode’, which commonly suffered from additional latency, and we’ve replaced it with a new ‘Direct Driver Mode’ that Oculus developed in collaboration with NVIDIA and AMD.
Direct Driver Mode is the most robust and reliable solution for interfacing with the Rift to date. Rather than inserting VR functionality between the OS and the graphics driver, headset awareness is added directly to the driver. As a result, Direct Driver Mode avoids many of the latency challenges of Extended Mode and also significantly reduces the number of conflicts between the Oculus SDK and third party applications. Note that Direct Driver Mode requires new drivers from NVIDIA and AMD, particularly for Kepler (GTX 645 or better) and GCN (HD 7730 or better) architectures, respectively.
Runtime and SDK Compatibility through 1.0
Oculus are targeting a November release for the consumer ready Oculus PC SDK 1.0. Future updates to the runtime post-1.0 will continue to support games and applications built using 1.0 (or any later release).
However, until 1.0 is available, each new release of the runtime will only guarantee support for the previous version of the SDK. This allows Oculus to more rapidly evolve the software architecture and API on the path to shipping 1.0. In the case of 0.7, the runtime support will be limited to applications based on 0.6 and 0.6.0.1.
Upgrading to 0.7
There will be a significant number of games and applications based on older versions of the SDK, and Oculus are working hard to make the path to 0.7 as smooth as possible.
For Unreal developers, the current UE4 integration is based on 0.6 and they'll ship a 0.7 integration alongside the core SDK.
Developers working with Unity 5.x can leverage the direct VR support built into Unity, which uses 0.6. Oculus are working with Unity to update Unity 5.x to 0.7 so that Unity 5.x users don’t have any additional work.
For developers that need to remain on Unity 4.x, Oculus are releasing a 0.6.0.1-based plugin, and will continue to provide basic support for Unity 4 with future SDKs. However, it is recommend Unity 5.x for the best SDK support and development experience.
Windows 10 Support
Unfortunately. There was no mention of Windows 10 support in the Oculus blog posting. I can only imagine this major update will include this support.
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