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Microsoft and Sony continue to move forward developing their respective augmented reality and virtual reality headsets, but Nintendo still isn't convinced. Shigeru Miyamoto, creative director of Nintendo, recently discussed how the Japanese gaming company is focused on discussing titles - and technologies - that will be available to gamers sooner rather than later.
It looks like Nintendo is trying to portray VR as a technology that won't be fun and social, and could cause more problems. Miyamoto previously said he didn't feel VR is a good fit for Nintendo.
"The current software for these virtual reality devices cannot be played simultaneously by a number of people," Miyamoto said during a meeting in front of investors. "And since it is generally expected that the development for the applicable software for a high-performance device will take two to three years, there were a number of visual demonstrations for virtual reality devices."
Facebook may have over a billion daily active users, but where does the company see itself in 10 years time? During a Q&A on his profile yesterday, Mark Zuckerberg talked about what his company has in store for the future.
Zuckerberg says that he thinks the ultimate communication technology will allow you to send thoughts to another person, where he elaborated: "You'll just be able to think of something and your friends will immediately be able to experience it too if you'd like". But since we're not quite there yet, Facebook is putting its effort into artificial intelligence (AI), as the company "think[s] more intelligent services will be much more useful".
Not only that, but Facebook sees VR as the future - after all, it did acquire Oculus VR last year - where it says VR is the "next major computing and communication platform". The social network didn't leave out its Internet.org project, with Zuckerberg adding that it's "the most basic tool people need to get the benefits of the internet," including jobs, education and communication".
AMD has just announced a new partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA) in Hollywood, where it will provide Hollywood creatives with Liquid VR. This will allow Hollywood directors a better channel to work with AMD to create immersive VR experiences.
AMD's Corporate Vice President of Alliances, Roy Taylor, said that the most important part of VR isn't just about gaming. He said that the entertainment industry is investing "an order of magnitude more money and talent into VR than the game industry is". Taylor added: "Los Angeles has become the epicenter of virtual reality, not Silicon Valley. I meet a dozen new people every day in Hollywood that are interested in VR".
But with NVIDIA owning three quarters of the GPU market share, what can AMD do when it comes to VR? Taylor says that AMD has an advantage over its competitor, thanks to its "hardware asynchronous compute" technology, something we covered not too long ago.
Virtual reality seems to have hardware designers and software developers quite excited, even though there are plenty of skeptics. Joining the growing list of those excited about VR is Unity CEO John Riccitiello, and he recently shared thoughts about how his company is contributing.
Unity currently boasts "the best system for creating content for VR," Riccitiello said during his E3 keynote. He expanded his thoughts during a recent interview with GamesIndustry:
"We have the highest market share [in VR] right now, so we're already there. It's interesting that a company like Valve, which makes its own engine, is showing demos for VR, and all but one is built with Unity."
With smartwatches becoming more common, LG has just unveiled its latest battery from its battery arm, LG Chem. The company has started shipping hexagonal-shaped batteries that promise 25% more capacity than circular batteries.
These new batteries will provide an additional four hours average use, without having smartwatch owners having to go into low-power mode, or the smartwatch completely running out of juice. LG has said that it's working on more unusually-shaped batteries, something that will continue to add more battery life into the wearables.
Forget about video games, how about virtual reality being used in the medical world as a high-tech method for preventative care? Each sip of a soda or bite of your favorite fast food meal, and you see your waistline begin to expand.
Researchers from the University of Georgia are finding unique ways to show people the long-term danger in excessive sugar intake - which can lead to obesity - and VR seems to help people learn.
"We've found virtual reality to be much more effective than pamphlets or videos at getting the message across and prompting behavior change," said Grace Ahn, assistant professor in advertising and lead of the Georgia VR research efforts, in a statement published by the WSJ.
Nike is embracing virtual reality and recently published a video that allows soccer fans to "experience the Neymar Jr. Effect in virtual reality." To get the full immersive experience, Nike recommends using a Google Android smartphone paired with a Cardboard headset.
Despite being only 23 years old, Brazilian soccer superstar Neymar, who currently plays for Barcelona, is one of the best players in the world. This is a clever marketing effort by Nike, which allows viewers to use the 360-degree video view on mobile devices or a PC, but the virtual reality aspect is the most interesting.
"To view in virtual reality with your Cardboard headset on your Android device, open this link in the YouTube app, then tap the cardboard headset icon in the bottom right to switch into virtual reality viewing mode. Place your phone horizontally in the headset and look inside."
Virtual reality was one of the most popular topics during E3 2015 earlier this month, but Nintendo isn't quite on the VR bandwagon. Although the company is paying attention to VR developments, it's seen as a technology that doesn't fall in line with Nintendo's current game production philosophy: be fun and social.
Microsoft and Sony appear to be fully onboard VR hardware support - and game development - hoping consumers are okay with wearables designed to enhance the gaming experience.
"The current types of virtual reality aren't really a good fit for Nintendo's philosophy of trying to create entertainment that people can play together in the living room," said Shigeru Miyamoto, game design legend behind Mario, told Yahoo Games during E3. "We're constantly looking at different technology and experimenting with different elements of it, but we're not feeling virtual reality is currently in a place where it's ready to be released - as a product that fits with our philosophy of fitting in the living room."
The Apple Watch brought attention to the smartwatch and wearables market, but it looks like initial demand for the watch is dying down.
If you're thinking about purchasing an Apple Watch, you'll be happy to know there are plenty of them available to choose from. Even though some estimate 13 million to 20 million units have sold, the hyped Apple wearable isn't seen as a necessity.
"The initial demand for the Apple Watch looks lackluster," said Brian Blair, managing director at Rosenblatt Securities, in a statement on CNBC's "Power Lunch." "It's not clear what the killer app is. It's nice to get notifications, but it's a nonessential product."
It looks like you can't count game designer Warren Spector interested in developing VR video games, with the man best known for Deus Ex, saying VR won't be anything more than a fad. The Oculus Rift drew major attention during E3 2015 earlier this month, but Spector said he "didn't see much interest in VR or AR." However, he's an overall fan of the technology, but hasn't seen enough to become a "true-believer" in it... yet. Maybe?
"The other VR/AR stuff seemed like a big ho-hum to me. Maybe that's just my prejudice - I think VR's going to be a fad (again) and at best a minor part of gaming's future, not unlike stereoscopic 3D, which I also called out as a fad," Spector recently said in a blog post. However, he clarified his viewpoint in a follow up blog post:
"As an individual, I find VR cool, interesting and compelling. I'm not anti-VR. The content is coming, I have no doubt - I know too many super smart, super creative people working to create the unique content that will make the VR experience desirable if not irresistible."