Local & Global VR News from the Week of January 4th, 2019

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

Also, not really news, but hilarious (and NSFW) - Rappers saving dogs in virtual reality is your tummy rub for the day.

Local & Global VR News from the Week of December 28th, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • Google Lens Now Recognizes Over 1 Billion Products, “Google Lens, Google’s AI-powered analysis tool, can now recognize over 1 billion products from Google’s retail and price comparison portal, Google Shopping. That’s four times the number of objects Lens covered in October 2017, when it made its debut.”

  • Clay AIR Offers Hardware-Agnostic Hand Tracking for VR & AR, “Hand tracking has the ability to offer even more lifelike virtual reality (VR) experiences by removing controllers and simply engaging your hands directly. When it comes to this type of technology Leap Motion is one of the more well-known companies, manufacturing a small USB powered device that goes on the front of devices to track users hands. Clay AIR Inc. is another working in the same field but taken a different approach, developing gesture recognition software that’s hardware-agnostic.”

  • Valve will ship Knuckles dev kits ‘in quantity’, “The new controllers have been in development for some time from privately owned Valve, which is based in Bellevue, Washington. The engineers at Valve are the folks responsible for the key tracking technology used in the HTC Vive. They are also developing their own head-mounted display and, with these controllers, could offer new ways of using your hands in a virtual space. The controllers strap to your hands and allow for realistic grasping and release sensations with capacitive sensors meant to track finger movements.”

Local & Global VR News from the Week of December 21st, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • Zspace unveils laptop that enables easy AR/VR interaction, “Zspace has dedicated itself to “spatial content,” and today it is unveiling a laptop targeted at kids that lets them easily interact with augmented reality or virtual reality content.”

  • University Of Warwick Study Finds VR Is More Engaging Than Traditional Learning Methods, “Textbooks and video are out, and VR is in.”

  • IMAX drops VR, will close its last three locations next year, “Two years ago, IMAX had big plans for VR experiences, with its CEO anticipating 10-minute movie tie-ins that people would pay up to $10 to try at one of its locations. Now that dream is dead, as Variety points out an SEC filing from the company revealing that in Q1 2019 it will close the last three of its virtual reality installations, including the flagship location that opened last year in LA. It also cited a quote from CEO Richard Gelford telling investors on a recent earnings call that despite positive reactions from customers, ‘the numbers just weren't there.’”

Also, big thanks to WRAL Techwire for covering our latest Meetup!

Local & Global VR News from the Week of December 14th, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • Oculus Announces VR Charity Challenge With $100,000 Up For Grabs, “Set to run this week from December 13th – 16th, the challenge will see two teams of five influencers go head-to-head in four VR games. At the end of the week the winning team will score the prize money for the charity they’re representing. One side is playing for a gaming-focused veteran charity named Stack Up while the other is representing a mental health nonprofit that also focuses on games, named Take This.”

  • Viewr gives friends a window into what you are doing in VR, “The team at #include in Brisbane, Australia, created Viewr (which the company spells ViewR) for VR developers to integrate this capability into their games, making the VR experiences more social and shareable.”

  • New Report Uses VR To Unearth Hidden Pollution Along US Border, “Journalists at The Sun began investigating pollution in the New River, which runs from the Mexican city of Mexicali, over the border and into the US, in 2016. Their findings were compiled in a comprehensive new report named Poisoned Cities: Deadly Border that features VR as one small part of the larger piece.”

Local & Global VR News from the Week of December 7th, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • AR/VR spending to jump 69% in 2019, Augmented reality and virtual reality are poised to grow at a surprisingly steady pace over the next four years. According to market intelligence firm IDC, worldwide spending on AR and VR products and services will be up 69% next year, and will sport a five-year compound annual growth rate inching closer to 70% from 2017 through 2022.

  • Epic Games To Launch Its Own Digital Store This Month, When it comes to virtual reality (VR) the news is much better. VR compatible titles can be sold through the store if developers wish to, but the store itself won’t have a VR interface of any kind.

  • 1 billion AR/VR ad impressions: What we’ve learned, As we set out to show how immersive advertising beats traditional digital advertising, we learned a few lessons along the way. Here are our three key learnings from serving 1 billion VR/AR ad impressions.

Local & Global VR News from the Week of November 30th, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • Upcoming Unity Demo Day, During our last meetup in November, we heard from David Zielinski about his student's Unity Demo day. You can try out his ISS320 Unity Class student's desktop games and experiences on Tuesday, December 4th from 5-7pm. The Demo Day will take place at Duke University. Smith Warehouse. Bay 12. Room 228. (Near Duke's East Campus, Behind the Domino's Pizza on Main Street). You can find more info here on their Facebook event. And don’t forget about our next meetup - the Winter Social at Fullsteam Brewery on Monday, December 3rd!

  • US Army awards $480 million contract for Microsoft's Hololens, A bidding war between Microsoft and Magic Leap for a US Army contract to develop AR devices has concluded, with Microsoft emerging as the victor.

  • Submissions Now Open For The Third Annual Viveport Developer Awards, The awards are Viveport’s way of rewarding and celebrating developers who contribute to the platform’s success, with winners in each category able to walk away with up to $50,000 USD in cash and prizes including the newest HTC Vive hardware, tickets to the 2019 Game Developers Conference and marketing support.

Local & Global VR News from the Week of November 23rd, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • Blizzard may copy 'Pokémon Go' for a 'Warcraft' mobile game, According to Kotaku, the gaming titan is already building a Pokémon Go-like Warcraft game for mobile. It's currently being developed by Blizzard's "incubation" team, which is one of the company's newest departments formed when co-founder Allen Adham returned in 2016.

  • Google Working On VR Shoes That Let You Walk Forever In Your Living Room, Google’s new invention has showed up in a patent granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office: shoes that allow you to walk forever in a limited space, the next step in immersive virtual reality experience (no pun intended).

  • Magic Leap Details Grant Program For Indie App Developers, Rio Caraeff, chief content officer at Plantation, Florida-based Magic Leap, said in an interview with GamesBeat that the global Magic Leap Independent Creator Program will focus on independent developers who head teams that are less than 10 or 20 people.

    These individual creators can apply for project grants ranging in size from $20,000 to $500,000 per team during the next 30 days. Magic Leap will screen the applications and decide how much to give in terms of hardware, financial support, marketing, or development and engineering assistance.

Local & Global VR News from the Week of November 16th, 2918

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

Local & Global VR News from the Week of November 9th, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.

  • HTC’s China-exclusive Vive Focus VR headset is now launching worldwide, “HTC will start selling its standalone Vive Focus virtual reality headset worldwide today, after an initial launch in China earlier this year. The headset, which will cost $599 in the US, is aimed at business customers in 37 countries. It’s part of a larger attempt to make HTC VR headsets appealing to companies, including a newly announced collaboration app called Vive Sync, which lets employees in different offices meet and work together in VR.” Also worth noting - HTC is now taking applications for 6DOF dev kits.

  • Shadow VR is the latest rival to the Oculus Quest, “This VR headset does 6DoF tracking on both the head and controllers.”

  • Just 20% Of Rift Users Have A ‘Roomscale’ Setup, “Earlier this year, Oculus added a ‘Hardware Report’ page to their developer website. Recently, they added a new section reporting how many tracking sensors Rift users have connected to their PC. Interestingly, it shows that 80% have 2 or fewer sensors, while just 20% have the 3 or 4 sensors Oculus requires for ‘roomscale’ setup.”

And this is just an interesting, weird one -

Local & Global VR News from the Week of November 2nd, 2018

Each week we highlight 3 top stories from local and global VR/AR/MR news to help you stay on top of the trends.