Virtual & Augmented Reality News - Page 2
Sony today confirmed that it is developing a new PlayStation VR headset for the PlayStation 5 console. The new device would offer better displays, a wider field of view, better tracking, and new controllers.
Sony recently launched the PlayStation 5 console, and with it came support for the existing PSVR headset. Before the launch of the PS5 console, Sony wasn't very forthright with the details about its next VR system. Until today, we didn't know for sure that Sony would carry on with VR for the new console generation. The company's executives made it seem like we wouldn't see a new headset anytime soon.
A handful of patents have been uncovered in recent months, including a design for new motion controllers that includes additional buttons and a thumbstick for each hand. The patent diagram shows a pair of wand controllers that resemble Valve's Index controllers, with a sensor-embedded halo that wraps around the wands. Sony said the new controllers would integrate features from the DuelSense wireless controllers, although it didn't elaborate on which features precisely.
The wait is finally over. You can now have more than one user account on your Oculus Quest, and games can be shared between those accounts.
It's now much easier to share your Oculus Quest 2 with family members and close friends. Oculus just rolled out an early version of the Multi-User feature for the Quest platform. With the latest Quest 2 update, you can find the new option in the headset settings' Experimental Features section.
Quest's Multi-User feature allows up to three accounts in addition to the admin account to log into Quest 2 headsets. The admin user retains ownership of the hardware, while the extra users can access the content installed on the headset with a new App Sharing feature. Admin account holders can share content with additional users, but other users can't share their content on a headset they don't own.
Manus today revealed the Manus Pro Tracker, a SteamVR tracking puck for the enterprise market. These will be the third option for SteamVR tracking puck on the market this year.
The Manus Pro Tracker is a lot like the HTC Vive Trackers, which have been on the market for several years, but with an improved industrial design more suited to professional use cases.
The new Manus Pro Trackers are smaller than the Vive Trackers, and Manus said they weigh 40% less than Vive Trackers. The reduced weight helps to increase mounting stability, which in turn increases tracking accuracy.
Striker VR, a company that makes VR peripherals for VR arcades, revealed that it would be bringing its arcade technology to the consumer market with an updated device build for home use.
Striker VR's VR gun peripheral is an interactive accessory that offers increased immersion in shooter games thanks to its haptic recoil mechanism. The haptic system can simulate a variety of weapons, from standard rifles to futuristic energy weapons. The consumer version features a unique shape that looks like it could be suitable for more than just shooting games.
The concept images the Road to VR received from Striker depict a trapezoid-shaped object with a trigger grip in the center. A grip for your second hand can be found on the front, along with a trackpad on either side of the barrel. There also appears to be an extra button above the trigger grip.
Apple really is getting serious about AR and VR. Rumours about its upcoming AR/VR headset have been circling the internet since the beginning of the month, and now there are a few dozen AR/VR job postings on Apple's website.
Apple is currently looking to beef up its AR/VR team. The company is seeking a handful of software developers and hardware engineers with AR/VR experience in various disciplines, including software engineers, system UI engineers, video and 3D professionals, and audio software engineers.
Apple is also looking to fill a pair of marketing roles for the AR/VR division, including an art director position and a creative technologist position.
It seems like Apple is getting serious about moving into the world of XR. The latest round of news shows that the headset that Apple is developing will have extremely high-end features. Rumor has it the device will have dual 8K displays, eye tracking, passthrough cameras, and more than a dozen sensors to track the world your hands and other movements.
Apple has been very bullish about augmented reality, but it has been very quiet about virtual reality. Tim Cook has said in the past that he believes that virtual reality won't be as popular as augmented reality, and that isn't as useful. The latest leaks suggest that the company is likely working on a virtual reality headset as well, and it would likely be the first XR headset that Apple releases.
Don't get too excited about Apple taking over the VR industry, though. Rumor has it this headset won't be cheap, with suggestions of a $3000 price tag for the device. It won't compete in the consumer space at that price, but it would be right in line with enterprise-level hardware.
The price rumors aren't just an Apple premium. The reports suggest that Apple's headset would offer top-tier specifications. The device reportedly includes dual 8K displays to give the user a retina-level visual experience.
Oculus today introduced App Lab, a new way to distribute games for the Oculus quest. People will no longer be restricted to purchasing games in the Oculus store. The company is now offering official access to third-party distribution.
When Oculus launched the quest platform, it wanted to cater to newcomers to virtual reality, and part of its strategy was to make sure all content on the platform was of high calibre. Many games were denied access to the Oculus Store for not meeting the company's standards. Today, there are far more users on the Quest platform, and they often want to explore new software beyond Oculus's curated platform.
From this point forward, developers can distribute content that's not in the Oculus Store without requiring side loading. Now they can send a link or a product key to distribute games that don't meet Oculus standards.
Oculus today announced that there are over 60 games That have generated more than $1,000,000 in sales to date, with most of them making far more than 1,000,000.
Oculus launched the quest platform in 2019, and since then, the company has sold multiple million quest headsets. Quest 2 is selling exceptionally well, and so is the software that goes along with it. Many developers have announced that they have made huge sales, including the developers of Five Nights at Freddy's: Help Wanted, which hit the $1,000,000 mark in just over a week and Onward, which hit that same number in four days.
Onward has since gone on to bring in more than $10 million of revenue from the Oculus Quest platform alone.
Facebook is getting a lot more serious about its VR investment. The company just released its quarterly earnings call, and it had some news to share about the VR business. The Quest 2 is selling very well, but there's another headset in development.
Facebook released the Quest 2 in October 2020, and the device has been selling very well. Facebook never talks directly about sales numbers of its VR devices, but Mark Zuckerberg said the Quest 2 "is on track to becoming the first mainstream virtual reality headset."
Oculus falls under the "other" category in Facebook's revenue figures, which grew significantly over the last year. The last quarter of 2019 brought in $346 million, whereas, in 2020, Facebook's "other" revenue topped $885 million. It's unclear what else falls in that category, but it's a safe bet that Quest 2 and its content drive the lion's share of that revenue increase.
Technology is beginning to turn reality into science fiction. Valve is working on brain-computer interface (BCI) technology that will be available soon, and Gabe Newell said it would allow you to edit your mood.
If you thought virtual reality and augmented reality were science fiction technologies, wait until you try a BCI system that allows software to interact directly with your brain. If this sounds like science fiction to you, I've got surprising news for you: this technology exists in research laboratories today, and it's not far away from becoming a consumer product.
Gabe Newell recently sat down with 1 News in New Zealand to discuss his company's work in the BCI space, and what he said may shock you. Newell explained that BCI technology would enable you to alter your personality as you see fit. Software developers will be able to create applications that can change your mood to your liking, such as dialling up your motivation when you're having an off day. Newell expects that one of the earliest applications would be a sleep-improvement tool that ensures you get proper REM sleep and that you sleep for set durations.