10-set Vive bundle puts HTC VR in the classroom

The potential for VR to transform education has been espoused since the technology’s infancy. HTC Vive have made a move into the sector by releasing a multi-user Group Edition bundle for the Chinese market.  

Announced at the Vive Ecosystem Conference in Shenzhen, the Group Edition bundle includes 10 Business Edition headsets and two base stations. The offering is being priced at 49,999 yaun (roughly $7,260) and will be available for shipping in May.

This is around a 40% saving when compared to the...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 29 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, Platforms.

3D property tours could be about to change the real estate business

Realvision has completed a $1.3 million round of seed funding to begin developing its 3D property tour product.

Realvision Tours will provide estate agents with a range of content marketing tools, including VR-ready, interactive 3D tours of available property and auto-generated floor plans.

“Our platform is engineered to beat tomorrow’s disruption today.” Realvision’s co-founder Bryn Erickson said.

“Tomorrow is a moving target and this funding will help us develop for the future...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 27 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Enterprise, Platforms.

Linden Lab’s VR world Sansar reminds me of OASIS from Ready Player One

The VR world being created by Linden Lab, Sansar, reminds me of OASIS from dystopian novel Ready Player One.

Without any spoilers – because the book should be on your reading list – Ready Player One features a VR world called ‘OASIS’ where people live, work, and learn, to escape from overpopulated cities devastated by the depletion of fossil fuels, global warming, and economic stagnation. Based in 2044, it offers an increasingly feasible look at where the world is heading without...

By Ryan Daws, 08 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming, Platforms.

The sky is the limit…literally: Improved spectrum required for an optimal virtual world

Escapism is becoming easier nowadays with new and exciting developments in technology. Who needs old-fashioned TV and books when you can delve into whole other worlds created for your sensory pleasure?

Although the concept of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) is not new, this technology has experienced an influx of developments in the industry of late, gearing it up to be the next big thing, with a combined revenue prediction of US $150 billion for 2020. Whilst the creatives in the industry are...

By Anita Sivapalan, 06 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, AR, Brands, Platforms.

ZTE moves into virtual reality with end to end offering

Visitors at the recent Mobile World Congress (MWC) event in Barcelona recently saw ZTE Corporation officially launching its end to end (E2E) virtual reality (VR) live solution, along with four key components: VR content capture, elastic networks, a premium video platform and VR software development kits (SDK)/set-top box (STB).

The visitors witnessed ZTE’s low-latency 2K P30 VR broadcast service based on wireless networks and wired networks with 360-degree panorama video and mobile capture video via VR...

By VR 360, 03 March 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Ecosystems, Platforms.

NHS offers ‘Blue Room’ VR treatment to help children with autism overcome fears

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The Blue Room, an immersive virtual reality service which helps children with autism overcome their fears, is being offered on the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK after research from Newcastle University.

In 2014, the university team reported that eight out of 10 children who received Blue Room treatment were able to tackle their fears and some had completely overcome their phobias, even after a year later. The immersive reality treatment is available at NHS, where there is...

By VR 360, 16 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Case Studies, Platforms.

HTC plans to enter the mobile VR arena

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/monkeybusinessimages)

With its handset business continuing to falter, HTC is banking on making a success of mobile VR to improve the company’s outlook.

HTC is best known for its smartphones, but their recent flagships have failed to stand out amid tough competition from the likes of Apple, Samsung, and LG. Last year, HTC’s profits dropped almost 80 percent ahead of their next flagship release.

Where HTC has managed to carve itself a place is within the emerging VR market...

By Ryan Daws, 15 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Gaming, Platforms.

First ever European VR landscape unveiled with more than 100 firms on board

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A first ever European virtual reality (VR) landscape, featuring companies that are developing infrastructure, tools/platforms and/or apps for the thriving ecosystem, has been released by Silicon Valley-based venture firm The Venture Reality Fund, with more than 100 companies making the cut.

The European VR landscape, which was created in partnership with LucidWeb, is based on extensive research and information gathered during meetings and calls with regional VR ambassadors across...

By VR 360, 10 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Platforms, Research.

VCs and investors poured $2.3 billion into VR and AR startups in 2016

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According to technology advisor Digi-Capital, venture capital and corporate investors have invested $2.3 billion (£1.84bn) into virtual reality/augmented reality (VR/AR) startups in 2016, making it three times the USD $700 million investment of 2015.

AR hardware player Magic Leap raised $793.5 million at a $4.5 billion valuation at the start of 2016. Even when Magic Leap took the maximum money in the VR/AR industry in 2016, it accounted only for around $3 of every $10 invested...

By VR 360, 07 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, M&A, Platforms.

Microsoft indicates "thousands" of HoloLens units have been sold

(Image Credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft launched the developer version of HoloLens last year for a cool $3000, but until now the company has not indicated how many units have been sold. Roger Walkden, Microsoft's Commercial Lead for HoloLens, has now given us some idea after saying “thousands” have been shipped.

Bearing in mind HoloLens is still expensive and designed for developers at this stage, even a thousand units would be impressive. Microsoft is happy with the number...

By Ryan Daws, 27 January 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Devices, Microsoft, Platforms.

Finch to showcase kit at CES to “accelerate mobile VR revolution”

Picture credit: "CES 2016", by "Sungsil Hwang", used under CC BY NC / Modified from original

As the new year begins, it’s not a surprise that the vast majority of news will be around the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) – and this particular piece of news has come out before the event has even begun.

Virtual reality start-up Finch will showcase its Mobile...

By James Bourne, 03 January 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Hardware, Platforms.

BBC launches first piece of content for Oculus Store

(c)BBC

The BBC has launched its first virtual reality production on the Oculus store this week. The film, We Wait, is a dramatised depiction of migrants making the perilous journey from Turkey to Greece on smugglers’ boats.

Produced by BBC Connected Studio and Aardman Digital, We Wait animates real-life real accounts from migrants gathered by BBC News.

The film begins on the beaches of Turkey, and from there takes viewers on board a vessel as it makes the perilous crossing across the Mediterranean.

Through its use of VR, We Wait...

By Rachael Power, 14 December 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Platforms.

OSVR content now available on Steam

Open source VR platform OSVR is now available on Steam, bringing it one step closer to its dream of a one-for-all platform for virtual reality.

Those with compatible OSVR devices, such as its HDK series of headsets, can identify compatible content via an OSVR icon next to it.

There will also be added filter functions in Steam to narrow down searches for OSVR-enabled experiences.

“OSVR makes it easy for game developers to support hundreds of devices and for hardware vendors to tap into top-notch content....

By Rachael Power, 23 November 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Platforms.

ABBA to reunite for ‘new entertainment experience’ through VR

Picture credit: Universal Music Group

Swedish pop group ABBA has joined hands with world-renowned entertainment entrepreneur Simon Fuller and Universal Music Group to give their millions of fans a new entertainment experience by utilising the latest virtual reality technology.

Fuller, who first came to prominence through managing the Spice Girls, has his latest business which been quietly investing in virtual reality technologies, developing hyper-realistic digital humans in the field of...

By James Bourne, 28 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Brands, Platforms.

Platform aiming to be the 'Netflix of VR' launches today

(c)Inception 

A platform that wants to be the ‘Netflix of VR’ has launched around the world today.

Inception has a host of original and high quality made-for-VR content, and it’s aiming to be the top destination for virtual reality entertainment. Its team includes some high profile names such as the Emmy Award-winning executive producer of Homeland Ran Telem.

The platform uses original formats, exclusive rights and creative programming and hosts a portal of channels showcasing VR...

By Rachael Power, 19 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Platforms.

Oculus' new update has opt-in Facebook friends connection option

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Oculus’ new 8.1 update contains a new feature that’s dividing the opinion of users: an opt-in Facebook friends connection.

When updating their systems, Oculus users are reporting that a prompt will appear, asking whether they want to integrate their friends list on Oculus with their list on the social network.

By opting in, users will agree that their Facebook friends will become their Oculus...

By Rachael Power, 16 September 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Platforms.

AltspaceVR is breaking the virtual reality isolation barrier

Virtual reality is certainly shaking up certain industries: VR gaming is going to be huge over the next 12 to 18 months, and sectors such as defence and healthcare are slowly but surely trialling and adopting the tech.

But one argument against VR is that it’s very singular and even isolating, perhaps one of the reasons augmented reality is set to outgrow it over the next few years.

One company seeking to break down this isolation barrier is Silicon Valley startup and virtual social interaction company...

By Rachael Power, 05 July 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, Platforms.

Six E3 virtual reality announcements you need to know about

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Unless you've been hiding under a rock somewhere for the last few days, no doubt you'll have heard VR is a pretty big deal at this year's E3 conference - and predictably so. 

But there have been some surprises pulled out of the bag by key vendors, including Microsoft, Sony and Ubisoft:

1. Microsoft's Project Scorpio

Alongside the 40% slimmer Xbox One console, the $300 Xbox S which launches in August, Microsoft also...

By Rachael Power, 14 June 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming, Hardware, Microsoft, Platforms.