There are two major virtual reality headsets releasing this year for the PC market, the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. Both may seem fairly similar if you look at certain specs like screen resolution and refresh rate but the two devices actually take very different approaches, with Oculus focussing on the seated experience and the Vive going for room-scale VR, something that Oculus believes won't work for vast majority of consumers.
While the Oculus is capable of room-scale virtual reality, Oculus VR's Jason Rubin explains that most consumers likely won't have the space for it: “Some people will really want room scale,” Rubin told Polygon. “It's definitely cool. We have the tech ability to provide room scale. Our tech doesn't preclude that. At some point we'll demo that.”
The HTC Vive gives users the ability to walk around a 15x15ft area in VR thanks to the lighthouse sensors and motion controllers it comes with. However, the Oculus Rift will only be exploring this idea after the Rift launches, with the Oculus Touch motion controllers, which will come with a sensor that allows users to roam an area up to 5ft by 11ft.
The reason this isn't really a key focus for Oculus is simply because they believe that “the consumer has the space in general”.
KitGuru Says: We have known for some time that Oculus has been planning on focussing on a controller based VR experience, rather than using room sensors. The company's reasoning also seems fair enough too as most people likely won't have a room they can dedicate to VR.