Does full-time ‘extended reality’ suggest an architecture for confirmation bias?

Extended-reality (XR) technologies suggest a future of cinema-calibre, interactive content that enhances our physical environment in inspirational and useful ways. The positive potential of XR is vast, and many applications are clearly beneficial, especially in vertical markets.

The experience of using an augmented-reality (AR) headset on an assembly line, for example, so as to superimpose digital content over the physical environment in order to aid performance and safety, is a finite and circumscribed user...

By Jay Iorio, 29 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Applications, AR.

Sotheby's International Realty expands real estate-focused AR app to Apple iOS

Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates has announced that its real estate focussed AR app is now available on Apple iOS devices, iPad and iPhone. 

The Curate by Sotheby's International Realty app was made available for download from the Google Play Store earlier in 2018. The roomy-powered mobile app brings a home’s virtual staging pictures from flat, two-dimensional perspectives into AR allowing home buyers to virtually furnish or decorate their homes prior to fixing a purchase...

By James Bourne, 25 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Brands.

Immersive economy report suggests UK is VR/AR hotspot

A new study suggests that the UK has an oversized impact on the virtual and augmented reality spaces, with companies specialised in AR and VR generating £660 million in sales, accounting for an estimated 9% of the global market.  Furthermore, with appropriate support, this figure could reach more than £1 billion in 2018.

These impressive sales figures are the work of 1,000 companies which employ 4,500 people, which suggests there are a quite a few small businesses in the mix. However,...

By William Judd, 22 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Case Studies.

Google prototyping standalone AR headset

While VR headsets have become reasonably widespread with good retail availability, AR headsets like the Microsoft HoloLens and Magic Leap One remain restricted to developers and other professionals due to their high asking price and limited availability. However, other companies like Apple, Samsung and now Google are all reportedly working on AR headsets. News of the Google AR headset broke this weekend, so here's what you need to know.

German periodical Winfuture.de

By William Judd, 21 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Devices, Hardware.

SteamVR Input makes VR control schemes adaptable for users and devs alike

Building games for VR is hard. As well as making sure your game is fun and interesting, you've also got to ensure that your users don't puke after they put a VR headset on. Valve can't do too much about these three issues, but they can help solve another bugbear: control schemes.

VR gamers have a wide range of input options, from traditional console gamepads and racing wheels to VR-specific controllers made by giants like Oculus or hand-assembled by enthusiasts. Even if a developer supports the...

By William Judd, 16 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Devices, Ecosystems, Gaming, Hardware.

JDI's 1001 ppi VR display expected to debut in PSVR 2

One of the best - and worst - things about Virtual Reality is that fifty years after the first HMD (head-mounted display) was created by Ivan Sutherland, it is still a rapidly evolving space. This evolution has included progress in how VR apps should be designed and used, but it has always been tempered by the limits of current available technology, particularly in terms of displays and motion tracking.

Japan Display has recently unveiled its next-generation screens for VR headsets - which...

By William Judd, 15 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Hardware.

Microsoft launches HoloLens ‘as a service’ with education partner

Microsoft has announced the launch of HoloLens ‘as a service’, with a subscription programme being put in place alongside UK education provider JTRS.

JTRS, which is owned by Econocom, will offer what is being described as ‘mixed reality as a service’, with customers given a HoloLens package from £260 per device, per month for two years. The service includes the device, delivery, swap warranty, and collection and recycling at the end of the term.

Alongside this, users will be able...

By James Bourne, 02 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Ecosystems, Hardware, Microsoft.

New report highlights recent trends and threats in the global VR headsets market

A new report by QYResearchReports.com has outlined the challenges as well as trends associated with the global VR headsets market and offered a detailed analysis of the future growth opportunities.

“Global Virtual Reality Headsets Sales Market Report 2018” aims to reinforce the decision-making capacity of readers, potential investors and new entrants in the VR headset market by offering them with financial performance reports of prominent players, their M&A strategy news, the challenges they...

By James Bourne, 25 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Hardware, Research.

Intel cancels its smartglasses

Numerous reports have emerged that Intel is to shut down its New Devices Group, effectively bringing its costly foray into the wearables market to a close for now. The company has made several attempts, and spent several hundred million dollars, trying to break into the wearables market.

All current employees will be relocated to other divisions within the company or laid off, according to the reports.

The New Devices Group’s last major project was the Vaunt smartglasses, which promised to use advanced...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 20 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR.

Google Chrome browser gets Oculus support

Google has extended the VR support of its Chrome browser to include Oculus hardware. The Windows version (66.03.3359.117) of Chrome will now work natively with both Oculus Rift headsets and Touch controllers.

The news was not publicly announced by either company and was discovered by a Reddit user on the Oculus subreddit. The discovery of the browser flag was later confirmed by a second user who wrote:

“Just tried...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 19 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Hardware.

VR social network vTime raises $7.6 million in series A funding round, aims to introduce AR version

Virtual reality (VR) social network vTime has secured $7.6 million in a series A funding round that will be invested in the R&D of a new augmented reality (AR) version of the app coming towards the end of 2018.

In addition, the funding will be utilised to speed up the worldwide growth of vTime as well as in product development.

Martin Kenwright, CEO of UK-based vTime, commented: "vTime offers users the most immersive and intuitive way to engage with others in VR from wherever they are. The...

By James Bourne, 17 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, AR, Brands.

Google to use VR to help preserve endangered historical sites

Although they can often appear monolithic and unchanging, many of the world’s priceless historical sites are at risk of irreversible damage. Whether it is the Taj Mahal may be limiting the number of tourists allowed onto the site, or ISIS destroying world heritage sites in Syria, some of our most precious wonders are not as permanent as they may seem.

A partnership between Google’s non-profit...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 17 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

ODG formulates smartglasses for emergency landings in aviation industry

Smartglass manufacturer Osterhout Design Group (ODG) has formulated an all-in-one vision and oxygen solution in the form of a heads-up display (HUD) mask that uses the same AR technology from its smartglasses to help pilots in emergency landings in an unlikely situation where the cockpit is filled with smoke.

ODG has worked with FedEx Express to develop the easy-to-use and reusable prototype mask named SAVED (Smoke Assured Vision Enhanced Display) for their pilots. The smartglass maker aims to market its...

By James Bourne, 13 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, AR.

AR/VR consumer content and apps market hit $3.2 billion in 2017

The AR and VR consumer market swelled by an impressive 72% in 2017 to reach a value of $3.2 billion, according to analysis from IHS Markit.

Key factors in this growth are a steadily increasing user base that is proving happy to put more of their money into the ballooning number of content, apps and location-based VR entertainment. While VR is likely to remain a fairly niche market for the next few years, IHS Markit still sees it hitting 75.7 million users by 2021.

In terms of user numbers though, it seems...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 12 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Research.

AR can help Parkinson’s sufferers through ‘freezing’

People who suffer from Parkinson’s disease can feel a lot of social fear or shame with regards to their symptoms. A recent study by Parkinson’s UK found that 40% of sufferers feel the need to try and hid their symptoms in public.

The reasons behind this are not wanting to be embarrass others (63%), the fear of being judged (34%) or thinking that their symptoms are not socially acceptable (32%). The...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 11 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, AR.

Leap Motion unveil $100 AR headset prototype

Leap Motion has jumped into the AR pool with the announcement of a platform and headset called Project North Star. The gesture interface company claims that the device would cost less than $100 if it hit large-scale production.

If this is true, the project would cost signifcnatly less than the HoloLens, currently costing $3,000. The company has so far ruled it out of any serious competition with its larger rivals, however, emphasising that it is not a headset company.

Instead, the company sees Project...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 10 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR.

As VR/AR market grows, legal issues and investment are top startup concerns

New research from CCS Insight estimates that the global market for VR and AR headsets will hit $1.8 billion in 2018. The company is predicting that a massive 50% growth in the device market over the next four years until it hits $9.9 billion in 2022.

At this stage, a total of 121 million units will have been sold. This growth has been mostly driven by VR headsets and a new crop of standalone devices like the Occulus Go and HTC Vive Focus are likely to continue this trend. The coming five decades will see...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 09 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Devices.

Majority of parents concerned about VR’s potential negative effects on children

60% of parents that took part in a recent survey by Common Sense reported being concerned about the potential negative effects that VR could have on their children. These concerns are, however, accompanied by a belief that VR will provide children with highly informative and beneficial educational experiences.

62% of surveyed parents think that VR will be educationally beneficial, rising to 84% for those whose children already use the technology.  

According to the study, 20% of parents reported living...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 05 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Case Studies.

US Army reportedly set to test AR system in 2019

The US Army is set to begin testing an AR system called HUD 3.0 sometime in 2019, according to a report in Breaking Defense.

The HUD 3.0 system reportedly consists of a helmet-mounted system that projects a range of different information onto a soldier’s field of view. The concept is based on the heads-up display currently utilised on fighter planes, which was introduced in the late 1970s.

The kind of information that would be shown to soldiers using the system would be their location in relation to the rest...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 04 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR.