Virtual & Augmented Reality News - Page 6
If you've been lamenting the Oculus avatar system and its lack of diversity, fret no more. The new Oculus avatar system has practically unlimited options to make your virtual avatar look just the way you want.
Facebook Reality Labs just revealed a completely overhauled avatar system for the Oculus platform. The new avatar creation tool lets you get into the details when building your virtual likeness. Now you can adjust facial features individually, including eyes, nose, mouse, and you can even add wrinkles if you want to show your age.
The new Oculus avatar system also allows you to customize your hairstyle and hair colour, adjust your body type and size, and now you can dress yourself up in whatever clothes fit your personal style.
HTC today announced its partnership with iFixit to provide Vive customers with a means to repair their off-warranty VR hardware. That is a massive win for right-to-repair advocates.
HTC said that iFixit would sell replacement parts for Vive VR headsets and accessories and provide instruction guides to help people make their repairs. iFixit already sells all the tools required for each repair.
"We hear from many customers who love their original HTC Vive headsets after years of use, but occasionally still need a specific part," said Daniel O'Brien, General Manager, HTC America. "By partnering with iFixit, we're taking an unprecedented approach to meeting the demands of our long-time customers who want to repair and continue to use their beloved headsets that may be out of warranty or no longer available through us."
In an interview with Protocol, Magic Leap CEO Peggy Johnson announced that the company is gearing up to release its second-generation mixed reality headset this year. Johnson said Magic Leap 2 would be first available in an early access program, with general availability in early 2022.
Magic Leap's first headset did not fare well in the market. The company tried to target the consumer market with its messaging, but the device's price tag screamed enterprise technology. In the last year, the company made the pivot focus solely on the enterprise space and put its consumer roadmap on hold for a while. Magic Leap 2 is exclusively an enterprise-focused device, with significant attention on medical training.
Johnson said that a core priority for Magic Leap 2 is making it comfortable for front-line workers. The new headset is half the size of the original model, along with a 20% weight savings. Magic Leap 2 will also offer a much larger field of view than the original model. Johnson said that her engineering team managed to create optics that enable double the field of view provided in the Magic Leap One.
A new HTC Vive headset has won an award for its innovative design, but the company said it does not have plans to bring it to production.
HTC is gearing up for Vivecon 2021, where it will presumably announce a new VR headset. Rumour has it the product is meant for the enterprise market. If the design of this award-winning headset concept is any indication, we would bet on a consumer-level product from HTC this year.
The IF World Design Guide released its list of 2021 winners, and HTC won the award for best Product Design with a concept VR headset called the Vive Air. The award page describes the Vive Air as a VR headset inspired by the footwear industry. The Vive Air features breathable, quick-drying fabrics that help keep the headset cool and dry while during high-intensity activities such as using fitness apps.
Megadodo Games just hit a significant milestone in the development of its DecaGear lineup of VR hardware. The company is still working on perfecting the DecaGear 1 headset, but it's preparing to take orders for the first run of DecaMove locomotion controllers.
Last year, Megadodo Games came out of nowhere and announced an advanced VR headset and locomotion controller. The company quickly started taking pre-orders for the hardware that it planned to ship early this year. Development of the hardware is taking a bit longer than expected, but the DecaMove controller is almost ready to go.
The DecaMove clips to your hips and gives you an additional level of movement fidelity in first-person games. The DecaMove tracks your hip orientation and separates your head and hands from your movement direction for a more natural feeling experience. Megadodo sent out Blogger Editions of the DecaMove last month, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive.
Facebook Reality Labs' top brass shot down the rumours that predict an Oculus Quest 3 or Quest Pro headset is coming this year. Quest 2 will be on the market for "a long while."
Andrew Bosworth, VP Facebook Reality Labs, and John Carmack, Consulting CTO at Oculus, answered several community questions on Twitter Spaces. The discussion also touched on some rumours concerning upcoming hardware.
Bosworth recently teased that a Quest Pro may be in the works during an Instagram-based ask-me-anything event. It turns out his comments were more of a tease than you may have expected. Quest Pro seems to be a real thing, but we won't see it this year. UploadVR posted a partial transcript of the call which highlights a few key details from the discussion.
"I did hint at an AMA earlier this year about Quest Pro because we do have a lot of things in development where we want to introduce new functionality to the headset along the kinds that people theorize that we would want to introduce," said Andrew Bosworth in a recent Twitter Q and A event.
Pico Interactive just announced the Neo 3, its third-generation 6-DoF standalone VR headset. The company has a significant presence in the enterprise market. The Neo 3 is the company's most significant push to capture the consumer market, but only in Asia. At least for now.
Pico Interactive's new headset is a 6DoF standalone VR device with inside-out tracking with four cameras and two optically tracked controllers. The headset is powered by Qualcomm's XR2 SoC platform and supports the Wi-Fi 6 standard.
The headset also bears an uncanny resemblance to theOculus Quest 2 equipped with an Elite head strap. The headset shares a similar oblong shape with two cameras facing forward and to the ground and two cameras are facing up to the corners, just like the Quest 2 design. The Neo 3 also has a rounded head strap attachment that looks a lot like the swappable attachment on the Quest 2. Pico also said the Neo 3 has three IPD settings, also like the Quest 2.
Facebook Reality Labs announced that the next update for Oculus Quest 2, v28, would introduce three new features to make the headset even more compelling. The company plans to unlock 120Hz mode, introduce the Infinite Office VR productivity solution, and enable native wireless PC VR through Air Link.
Oculus had previously announced Infinite Office, a productivity solution that enables you to use your Quest 2 headset as your work-from-anywhere computer. It allows you to create a virtual computing space with access to windowed web browsers, document creation tools, and chat communication apps.
Most importantly, Infinite Office enables you to bring your real keyboard into VR environments and allows you to see it through your Quest headset. You can pair the Logitech K830 Bluetooth keyboard to your Quest to enable this feature. Along with keyboard tracking, the new update will allow the Quest 2 to track your desk space and integrate it with your safety boundaries.
HTC recently launched a set of Vive-branded VR accessories, but it isn't done with the new announcements yet. It is now dropping hints that there's a new headset on the way.
HTC's marketing team had some fun on Friday. The HTC Vive Twitter account dropped a very dark image of a closeup of what appears to be an inside-out tracking camera on the edge of a headset.
The shot is cropped too tight, and the image has too much contrast to see any meaningful details. Attempts to enhance the image have been fruitless in uncovering anything else. Meanwhile, HTC also released a teaser on the Vive Blog, which cheekily confirms that a new headset is imminent.
HTC has not confirmed any details about this mysterious new headset. The VR headset market could use a Quest 2 competitor, and HTC is due to a refresh to the Vive Focus lineup. Hopefully, this device will be a consumer product, not a business-only headset like the Vive Focus. We should know more soon. When HTC started teasing the new Vive Tracker and Facial Tracker accessories, it was just a matter of days before the formal reveal.
HP this week revealed the price of its upcoming Reverb G2 Omnicept Edition. The new enterprise-focused VR headset includes various biometric sensors that are not included with the standard Reverb G2, and they come at a high cost.
HP first revealed the Omnicept Edition of its Reverb G2 VR headset in September of last year. The headset is based on the HP Reverb G2, which features dual 4K displays and Valve's over-the-ear speaker solution. The Omnicept Edition builds on that base and adds several biometric sensors to unlock advanced features for business uses.
The Omnicept Edition includes a pair of eye-tracking sensors from Tobii, which enable features like foveated rendering for improved performance. The eye-tracking sensors can also provide useful information about the user's level of focus and attention. HP also included a heartrate monitor, which in conjunction with the eye-tracker, can help determine a user's cognitive load level.