MIGW and PAX Australia show off virtual reality exhibitions

Gaming exhibitions and shows around the world are becoming dominated largely by virtual and augmented reality games; and Melbourne International Games Week (MIGW) is no exception.

The event is hosting a free public virtual reality event with trials of the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Playstation VR.  

Virtual reality is big news in Australia, according to analysts. Just last week a report was released predicting that 2.5 million Australian homes

By Rachael Power, 26 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

Mixed reality company bags £100,000 investment from John Lewis

Virtual and mixed reality are solving problems that people didn't even know there was an answer to. According to a YouGov survey, 70% of people can't imagine a product in their own homes and this is a challenge for retailers - a problem indeed. 

But virtual reality is soon becoming the 'Apple' of the tech world - there's a solution for that. 

Enter DigitalBridge. It's a virtual visualisation tool that allows consumers to use mixed reality to view products in their own homes....

By Rachael Power, 25 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

Mobile VR game Rangi sets early 2017 release date

A mystical-looking virtual reality mobile game is set to launch in 2017, developed by a studio based in Casablanca, Morocco.

The independent studio annouced its new game, Rangi, will come out in the New Year and be set against an African tribal background.

Rangi will be a puzzle/adventure game for mobile, which allows players to explore the mythology of Africa through a series of puzzles in a virtual reality experience. 

According to the company, the game's VR experience is boosted by "compelling musical...

By Rachael Power, 24 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming.

New VR horror game out in time for Halloween

Those who are squeamish about horror virtual reality experiences: look away now. A new game has launched on Steam for the HTC VIVE ahead of Halloween that brings some fun to the horror genre, Sophie's Guardian. 

The VR survival-horror first-person-shooted game was produced by GameCoder and Render Farm Studios and features three game modes including 'Puppeteer'. This means players can share the VR experience with friends who don't own a VR headset. 

Other modes include Guardian and...

By Rachael Power, 21 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming.

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.

Microsoft research shows off controllers that allow you to 'feel' in VR

(c)iStock/joker-Daria

Imagine being able to physically feel the shape and texture of an object in virtual reality, rather than just haptic buzzing from your controllers.

The ability to do this may not be as far away as you think. Microsoft Research has produced a paper and video showing off two controllers they have developed that allow virtual reality enthusiasts that do just that.

The mechanically actuated controllers...

By Rachael Power, 18 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Research.

NASA: VR is a 'game changer' and will be standard in 10 years

(c)NASA/David C. Bowman

There are some who would doubt the future of augmented and virtual realities as viable and long-lasting tech for the future, but a recent article by NASA has further fortified our beliefs that it’s here to stay.

The feature about NASA’s oldest research facility Langley, in Virginia, focuses on how the center is aiming to make virtual and augmented reality accessible to its employees, as...

By Rachael Power, 17 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

Jaguar launches virtual reality experience to mark return to racing

(c)REWIND/Jaguar 

One of the things we love about virtual reality is its ability to bring people on any adventure in the world and have it feel realistic, despite your budget or mobility.

A recent experience from creative production agency Rewind has taken that one step further. It's partnered with Jaguar to create a 4D experience, where people can take a realistic trip in a high-speed challenge through famous street circuits that Formula E will visit in...

By Rachael Power, 17 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

2.5m Australian homes predicted to have VR headsets by 2020

Virtual reality is not just an emerging tech field in the US, Europe and Asia; it’s also making a major splash Down Under.

According to research carried out by an emerging tech analyst, Telsyte, 115,000 headsets will be sold in the second half of this year alone - rising to half a million next year.

By 2020 the firm’s research estimates over 3.3 million units will have been sold in Australia alone, reaching 2.5 million...

By Rachael Power, 14 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

'VR is here to stay', claims UK-based virtual reality entrepreneur

Sony has gone gangbusters for its Playstation VR launch marketing this week.

Everywhere, people are talking about VR in a big way, and it's potentially because good quality VR is now being affiliated with a console many people already have, rather than out-of-reach expensive PCs.

While it remains to be seen whether this is the crank of the chain that will make virtual reality roar fully into life, one Newcastle-based entrepreneur is convinced the tech is here to stay.

"The endless possibilities and...

By Rachael Power, 13 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

London firms to create immersive VR experience for Chinese national park

Two English companies have been commissioned to create a 'giant screen' 4D immersive film experience, using virtual reality technology, for a Chinese tourist attraction.

Talesmith and Coffee & TV have come together to set-up special projects vehicle FLYRIDE to produce a five-minute film for the new visitor's centre at Changbaishan National Park in China. 

The film will include a two-minute pre-show that uses smart suspension seat technology to place the audience ‘inside’...

By Rachael Power, 13 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

New puzzle-based VR game due out for PSVR and Vive in 2017

(c)Stirfire Studios

A new puzzle-focused game is coming out for the Playstation VR and HTC Vive in early 2017.

In Symphony of the Machine, players will need to manipulate a ‘mysterious’ tower to control the weather and restore life to a post-apocalyptic world.

The Playstation VR is due out this week, but announcements on titles for the platform have been rolling in already for next year.

The game

After waking up in a sun-scorched desert, Symphony players will see a strange tower looming in the...

By Rachael Power, 12 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming.

Developers in the UK can now pre-order Microsoft's HoloLens

(c)Microsoft

Developers and commercial bodies in the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, New Zealand and Australia can now pre-order Microsoft’s mixed reality HoloLens kit.

It’ll set you back $3,000 (over £2,700) and ship in late November, but at last, developers this side of the pond can now try out Microsoft’s MR offering.

HoloLens launched in the US for commercial...

By Rachael Power, 12 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Developers, Devices.

HP and HTC launch Vive-ready bundle

(c)HTC

HTC and HP have partnered up to produce the Vive Ready HP Computer Bundle, meaning a full system, headset included, will cost you just under £1,500. 

The bundle consists of a VR-ready HP ENVY 750-470na alongside a full Vive VR system in a brushed-metal finished. 

It also comes packaged with a USB drive, which contains hardware set up instructions and required software allowing for a one-click installation.

The HP ENVY has some pretty...

By Rachael Power, 11 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Devices.

IMAX to launch first virtual reality centre in Manchester

(c)iStock.com/SunflowerEY

IMAX and Odeon & UCI Cinemas are partnering up in the UK to bring the first ever pilot IMAX VR centre to Europe.

The centre is set to open before the end of the year and will be at the Odeon Printworks multiplex in Manchester. 

Earlier in 2016, IMAX announced partnerships with Acer and Starbreeze VR, under which it will use its StarVR headsets at the IMAX VR centres, which are set to...

By Rachael Power, 11 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

The Guardian launches new virtual reality team

(c)Alicia Canter/The Guardian

UK based publication The Guardian has announced a new virtual reality team, in a bid to bring the tech to its news storytelling.

The team is led by  Francesca Panetta, executive editor of virtual reality and Adam Foley, commercial strategy director. 

Earlier this year, The Guardian won awards for its first VR project, 6x9: a virtual...

By Rachael Power, 11 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Advertising, Brands.

Madefire launches comic book app on the Oculus Store

(c)iStock.com/EvgeniiAnd

Comic books are being brought to live in virtual reality, with a new app launching on the Oculus Store very soon.

Madefire already features popular comics on its smartphone and tablet app, and is looking to bring this one step further with the introduction of a VR experience.

It has launched a preview app on the Oculus Store, which VR enthusiasts can try out for free to see how the comic experience plays out. The...

By Rachael Power, 10 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Applications.

The lowdown on Playstation VR and where to buy in the UK

(c)Playstation

Sony’s Playstation VR is coming to the UK this Thursday, bringing gaming VR to the masses.

If you already have a PS4 and a Playstation Camera (£39 if not), you’re good to go. There’s no real need to buy the Move Controllers just yet as it’s not known which games will require these.

Specs-wise, the headset runs 120 frames per second, has a built in mic...

By Rachael Power, 10 October 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Gaming.