Can the Valve Index Do Hand Tracking?

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By Valerie Becker

Valve Index is undoubtedly one of the top VR headsets on the market, offering impressive features and specifications. However, one question that often arises among VR enthusiasts is whether the Valve Index can do hand tracking. In this article, we’ll explore this topic in detail.

What is Hand Tracking?

Hand tracking refers to the ability of a VR headset to recognize and track the movements of your hands without requiring any controllers or other external devices. It enhances the level of immersion in virtual reality experiences by allowing users to interact with virtual objects using their hands.

Valve Index Hand Tracking

The Valve Index uses a technology called “Knuckles” controllers, which are designed to provide more immersive control over virtual objects than traditional handheld controllers. However, these controllers are not designed for hand tracking.

That being said, Valve has been working on hand-tracking technology for some time now. They have developed a prototype device called “Skeletal Input,” which uses sensors to track the movements of your hands without requiring any additional equipment.

Skeletal Input

Skeletal Input works by using an array of sensors that are placed around your VR headset’s cameras. These sensors detect the position and movement of your hands in real-time and translate them into corresponding movements within the virtual environment.

One significant advantage of Skeletal Input is that it allows users to interact with virtual objects using their fingers rather than just relying on button presses and triggers. This level of precision in hand tracking can significantly enhance immersion in VR experiences.

Current Status

While Valve has been working on Skeletal Input for some time now, it is still in its early stages of development. There’s no official word from Valve yet regarding when or if this technology will be available to consumers.

In addition, even if Skeletal Input becomes available, it will likely require specific hardware upgrades, which may not be compatible with the current Valve Index headset.


In summary, while the Valve Index doesn’t currently offer hand tracking capabilities, Valve is working on a solution. Skeletal Input is an exciting technology that has the potential to revolutionize how we interact with VR environments. However, we’ll have to wait and see when and how it becomes available to consumers.