Virtual & Augmented Reality News - Page 1
Earlier this month, Vive rolled out a handful of new features for the Vive Focus 3 standalone VR headset. Focus 3 is a business-oriented headset, and the latest updates are business-focussed. However, consumers ultimately reap the benefits of these changes because they are meant for the arcade market.
HTC shipped the Vive Focus 3 with standard Wi-Fi 6 support, but the headset came equipped with a Wi-Fi 6E module. Pending certification, HTC plans soon to unlock the full capabilities of the modern wireless chip. Wi-Fi 6E operates in the 6 GHz frequency range and offers low latency and high-bandwidth data transmission, ideal for VR devices.
HTC also revealed LBE (Location-Based Entertainment) Mode, which would enable a much larger tracking space for multi-user experiences. When the Focus 3 shipped, the maximum tracked space was 15m x 15m. That's not a small amount of space, roughly the size of a tennis court. However, the new maximum is over four times the size, at 33m x 30m. LBE Mode also removes the automatic redraw feature, meaning the headset will retain the boundary settings between users.
IO Interactive has announced that Year Two of Hitman 3 will kick off with the PC VR version of the game. Hitman 3 players on PlayStation VR have always had the option to play the game in VR. Next year, gamers with a strong enough PC and room-scale VR system will be able to experience the game in total immersion.
IO Interactive just announced its plans for Year Two of the Hitman 3 game. The developer revealed that more than 50 million people have now played the game, but so far, they haven't experienced the game with a VR headset connected to a powerful PC. That's about to change in January when the PC VR update will go live.
The developer didn't have much to say about the PC VR version, but the teaser video gives you an excellent glimpse of what to expect. The teaser showed the game played on an Oculus Rift S and a Valve Index headset. Presumably, it should work with any PC-compatible VR headset, such as an HTC Vive or a Quest 2 with Oculus Link.
Last week, a hobbyist researcher with a small YouTube channel called Basti564 uncovered a set of textures for a new Oculus headset. Over the weekend, Basti564 compiled the surfaces into a 3D model and published images and a video of their findings.
During the Facebook Connect conference, the company now known as Meta talked about an advanced headset that it's currently preparing to launch next year. The new headset, dubbed Project Cambria, is a high-end VR headset compatible with the Quest ecosystem and brings new features to the mix.
Project Cambria will have face-tracking, eye tracking, high-resolution displays, compact "pancake-style" lenses, and as previously leaked images revealed, it will have a docking station for charging. The rendered 3D model also shows that Project Cambria will have a compact faceplate and a sleek, built-in head strap that resembles the "ball-cap" design of the Hololens 2.
The rendering shows forehead and rear cushions that appear to be made of a moisture-resistant material like you find on the PSVR headset. However, that's hard to confirm from the clunky composite of the texture components.
Valve released the October Steam Survey results, and the numbers look great for Meta. The Oculus brand has long held the largest share of the VR pie. To this day, the original Rift, which hit the market five years ago, represents a 5% slice of SteamVR users. Quest 2, however, holds more than a 35% share of SteamVR users.
Last month, Valve noted that 1.85% of Steam users connected a VR headset to their machines. That's a marginal increase of 0.05%, but when you consider Valve has 120 million Steam users, it works out to 60,000 new headsets connected to SteamVR, and roughly 2.2 million SteamVR users, total.
The top three headsets on the SteamVR survey are the Oculus Quest 2 with 35.02%, the Valve Index with 17.30%, and the now-discontinued Oculus Rift S with 16.25%. HTC's Vive Pro and Vive Pro 2 gained a small fraction of the market share, but the original Vive is losing favor with gamers, ultimately netting HTC a marginal loss in overall market share. 14.05% of SteamVR users have HTC headsets. More than 61% of SteamVR users have Oculus headsets.
Meta, formerly known as Facebook, is moving away from its controversial Facebook login requirement for Oculus hardware. That change comes alongside the name change for the company and the discontinuation of the Oculus brand name.
Mark Zuckerberg and co. made some big announcements at Facebook Connect 2021. The big news is that the company is now known as Meta--a change that not everyone is pleased about. The other significant news is the Oculus brand name will soon cease to exist. Both the Facebook company and the Oculus brand are changing to Meta. One thing that sort of slipped under the radar during the presentation is that Meta will decouple Facebook accounts from VR and AR headset accounts.
When Facebook made the change to require a Facebook login for Oculus accounts, the decision was met with harsh criticism from almost everyone. Media, fans, and even politicians didn't like what Facebook was doing. And the people who got banned from their Oculus accounts after an infraction on the Facebook social media site were especially upset about this. Not to mention anyone who doesn't want a Facebook account. For nearly a year, Facebook stood its ground on the account issue.
Yesterday, Facebook announced that it would be rebranding the company as Meta to better align with its efforts to build the metaverse. Most of the company's other brands, like Instagram and Whatsapp, and even the Facebook social media platform, will keep their names and remain unchanged. Except for Oculus. That brand is done.
By next year, the Oculus brand name will cease to exist in the market. The company's AR/VR division will adopt the Meta name, and the Oculus Quest will go on to be known as the Meta Quest, and the Oculus App will change to Meta Quest App.
"We're bringing our brands and products closer to Meta, which is the umbrella for all our products and services," said Andrew Bosworth, Head of Reality Labs. "When people buy our products, we want them to clearly understand that all of these devices come from Meta and ladder up to our metaverse vision. That's why we're evolving our brand across our current lines of hardware in-market, as well as for all future products, in order to bring more consistency across the portfolio and more transparency to consumers."
Facebook Connect kicked off with a keynote presentation on Thursday, and the company had several announcements to share. Including a new company brand name, new games on the way, and some insights into its experimental work with advanced XR technology. Meta also revealed that it would release a new Oculus headset next year, but it's not the Quest 2 successor you might be expecting.
Meta revealed Project Cambria, an advanced device that will be on the market next year with a premium price tag.
"This is not the next Quest. It will be compatible with Quest. But it's a completely new, advanced, and high-end product. It will be at the high-end of the price spectrum, too, said Mark Zuckerberg. "Our plan is the keep building out this product line to release our most advanced technology before we can hit the price points that we target with Quest. "
During the Facebook (now Meta) Connect keynote presentation, the company didn't have a lot to say about upcoming content. We got a hint at a new feature for Beat Saberthat would introduce a level progression system, and we found out that Population: One has more DLC just around the corner with a Winter event announced. But the thing that stood out most is the announcement that Grand Theft Auto is officially coming to Oculus Quest.
The details about the game are all but non-existent. However, we now have confirmation that Rockstar games are finally bringing its beloved franchise to the VR medium. There are no details about the release date yet, and we didn't get any screenshots or videos of the game in action, so it's probably going to be a while. Either way, this is an exciting development for VR content.
There are now and will soon be a good selection of VR headsets on the market. Great content exists, but it's few and far between, and there aren't many recognizable franchises in VR yet. Grand Theft Auto is one of the most popular games in history. If anything will attract newcomers to VR hardware, it's a title like Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
More than half a decade ago, Mark Zuckerberg saw the future when he tried the Oculus Rift prototype for the first time. The founder of Facebook quickly realized that immersive technologies would become the next computing platform. Now he's going all-in, with a new company name to show how serious he is. Today, he's so confident in the idea of the metaverse that he's rebranding his business to match his conviction. Facebook will now be known as Meta.
During the Facebook Connect keynote presentation, Zuckerberg explained his position. Facebook has always been a company that builds technology that connects people, he said. When he founded Facebook, social media was the platform available to connect people online. In the future, the internet will be much more immersive, and Zuckerberg wants Meta to have a foundational role in crafting our future metaverse.
The vision of the metaverse the Meta laid out is a vast social world that blends the real-world with different levels of the digital world. It's what the company sees as the next iteration of the internet. It will be accessible through AR devices, VR devices, and smartglasses, as well as the mobile devices that we're used to.
Pimax revealed the Pimax Reality 12K QLED VR headset today during the company's Frontier virtual event. This new headset is the most ambitious attempt at a perfect VR headset that any company has ever made. Get ready to spend some big money because this thing is incredible.
The specifications of the Pimax Reality 12K QLED don't even make sense to me. Pimax crammed two 6K mini-LED QLED panels into its new headset, which is a massive increase in resolution compared to the current 8K X flagship, which boasts dual 4K panels.
Pimax partnered with Tobii to integrate Tobii eye-tracking hardware and enable foveated rendering to achieve smooth framerates at such high resolution. The headset also had a motorized automatic IPD system, kind of like the Varjo Aero's solution.