Google, Intel, News, Oculus, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

NBA partnership brings immersive basketball experience to fruition

A previously-reported partnership between Intel, the NBA and television network TNT has been brought to fruition, with the release of a VR app for watching basketball games, highlights and recaps in VR. Released in time for this weekend’s NBA All Star game, the TNT VR app integrates Intel’s True VR technology to provide an immersive experience that simulates being at the arena as a spectator. Although the app is free, those hoping to watch full games will need to sign in using their cable provider credentials. The software is compatible with a range of VR platforms, and is available from the Oculus and Google Play

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Apple, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Wearables

New Apple patent describes optical system for VR headsets

Details of Apple’s new design for a wearable VR device went public last Thursday when the United States Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application Apple filed in 2017 related to optical systems. The patent describes an “Optical System for Head-mounted Display” intended to make VR headgear more comfortable. In the application, Apple notes that VR headsets can be “cumbersome and tiring to wear” due to “bulky and heavy” lens arrangements. VR devices typically use microdisplays, requiring high magnification of visual content and thus thicker lenses between the display and the wearer’s eyes. Currently, many popular headsets overcome this issue by using Fresnel lenses–a type of

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Artificial Intelligence, Companies, News, Technology Security

Boston Dynamics presented upgraded SpotMini – a robot dog

We all remember Atlas, the “crazy” robot that was jumping and doing flip-overs all around. Well, now he got himself, well, a “pet” in a matter of speech. On Monday,Boston Dynamics presented a kind of a “robot dog” that is learning new tricks every day. The company, currently owned by SoftBank, showed its SpotMini bot opening a door and holding them open, using its extendable arm/neck. The all-electric droid stands 84 cm tall, features canine-like mechanics and a five-degree of freedom manipulator arm that takes its cues from a sensor suite. Among these sensors are stereo cameras, depth cameras, an inertial measurement unit and position and

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Analysis, Augmented Reality (AR), Google, Mobile, News, Smartphones, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Google bring AR Stickers to Motion Stills…to mixed reception

Google’s interest in VR is no secret. From the wildly-successful Google Cardboard (and the movement it inspired), to their push for 360 content on YouTube, it’s clear that Google thinks VR is the future. This affinity extends to AR as well, and for right now it looks like Google is looking to compete with social media giants like Snapchat in the AR arena. At the tail-end of 2017, Snapchat started pushing AR tie-ins and a full-blown Lens Studio for AR effect creation. For its Pixel phones, Google launched AR Stickers as a demonstration of the power of the Pixel camera. The app and its eponymous

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Companies, CPU, Enterprise, Hardware, HP, Microsoft, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Virtual Reality (VR)

HP muscles into VR hardware space

HP appears to be the latest hardware manufacturer to be making a strong push into the VR space, after announcing a range of developments including the pending release of a professional version of its mixed reality headset. The announcements came earlier this week at SOLIDWORKS World, a popular event for those working in the field of 3D CAD. Among the product announcements are an upgrade to the HP Z4 Workstation, the pending (March) release of the commercial-grade HP Windows Mixed Reality Headset – Professional Edition, an HP VR Launch Kit designed for specialized VR deployment, and the extension of HP’s Device as a Service offering

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Companies, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Walmart expanding immersive retail efforts with VR studio acquisition

Walmart is making a deeper foray into virtual reality, having announced this week the acquisition and re-launch of VR studio Spatialand through it’s tech incubator, Store No 8. The news comes via a blog post by Katie Finnegan, who serves as both Walmart Global eCommerce’s VP of Incubation and Principal/Founder of Store No 8. According to Finnegan, the company had worked with Spatialand last year, to develop a proof-of-concept VR experience in conjunction with Jeremy Welt. Prior to the acquisition, Welt worked as a VR consultant for companies including Splash and Mindshow, having previously served in business development roles at YouTube and Disney. He is

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Entertainment, Gaming, HTC, Software Programs, Space and Science, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Brain-controlled video game to hit VR arcades this year

Boston-based startup Neurable will bring its brain-controlled VR video game Awakening, which the company claims is the first of its kind, to VR arcades around the world by the end of this year. This brain-computer interface (BCI) is made possible by the attachment of an HTC Vive VR headset to a brain-scanning headband equipped with electrodes that pick up neural activity by recording electroencephalography (EEG) signals. When the gamer focuses his gaze on an object in the game, Neurable’s machine learning software recognizes the resulting changes in the EEG signal and turns this into a game command, selecting that object for use. For this to

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Analysis, Gaming, Hardware, News, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Sony patents next-gen VR motion controllers

As reported by VRFocus, Sony has released two new patents that may indicate next-generation motion controllers. The first of these patents show off a controller with an analog stick (as opposed to a touchpad common on other VR controllers or the buttons on the PS Move wands), and a number of face-mounted buttons. The second offers finger placement tracking and refers to the controller being tracked by a head-mounted display, which could imply a new revision of the PlayStation VR headset for use with these controllers. For those who aren’t familiar with the current PSVR setup, here’s a little background information. None of the hardware

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Hardware, HTC, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

HTC Vive Pro adds hand-tracking and more through new cameras

The HTC Vive Pro boasts numerous improvements over its predecessor, the HTC Vive, but its new dual cameras are particularly interesting. HTC was intentionally vague about them at CES, so it left many enthusiasts speculating. According to Vive VP Raymon Pao, the cameras are stereoscopic and only have a VGA resolution. As originally developed, they were just there as a safety feature to help people stop themselves from bumping into things. Where things changed was when developers got their hands on it. Speaking to Engadget, Pao says the cameras are able to capture depth data within two meters. An unnamed Japanese developer used the dual

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Augmented Reality (AR), Companies, Intel, News, Wearables

Intel planning to launch smart glasses this year

Intel Corp.’s augmented reality division could ship consumer-focused smart glasses before the end of the year, according to reports. This chip-giant values the division at as much as $350 million, said the people, declining to be identified since the plans aren’t public. Intel is also said to be seeking multiple investors for this unit, which has been developing smart glasses that pair by Bluetooth with a mobile phone. The spectacles, according to reports, will be able to display contextual information into the wearer’s field of view with a laser-based projector that reflects off the lens and onto the retina. Taiwan’s Quanta Computer Inc. is making the product

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, Hardware, Mobile, News, Oculus, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables, Wearables

First look at Oculus Go via Twitter and Reddit

Photos of what is perhaps the most hotly-anticipated VR headset of 2018 appeared today on Twitter, only to quickly be removed — but not before at least one image ended up on Reddit. According to multiple sources, at least two developers tweeted snapshots of Oculus Go devkits that they received today, with one of those photos making it to Reddit. The Oculus Go is intended to be an ultra-affordable, all-in-one VR solution, with units pricing in at a $199 US MSRP. Distribution of devkits also suggests that Oculus is on track to deliver the headset according to their “Early 2018” timeline. Moreover, if product photos

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AMD, Companies, Cryptocurrency, Graphics, Hardware, News

AMD: We are ramping our GPU production

Because of the increasing market demand, AMD said that they are planning to increase production of graphics cards which are currently in short supply. Recently they launched RX Vega GPU that you simply can not buy anymore because of the raising popularity inside of the crypto mining community. AMD admitted that their Radeon cards were also in short supply and said that the “guilty ones” were exactly the mining applications. Therefore, the company promised to increase production and said that they are hoping to satisfy the growing demand without disappointing any of its customers. “The graphics channel is very low, and we are certainly working

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Buying Guides, Exclusive, Gaming, Guides, Hardware, Intel, Nvidia, VR World

VR WORLD’s 2018 VRPC Guide

While it isn’t difficult to get excited about virtual reality, many people have not jumped onboard yet by setting themselves up with VR-capable hardware. Whether it is pricing (top of the line PC can cost thousands), availability or a knowledge gap (or a combination of either) that stands in the way, we can certainly help alleviate part of the challenge by providing you with a PC spec sheet build for a killer VR experience, all on a budget of around $1,000. Here is everything you need to know about it. The Build Case: Thermaltake Core G21 Tempered Glass Edition The start of every PC build

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AMD, Apple, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Gaming, Hardware, iOS, Microsoft, Mixed Reality (MR), Mobile, Mobile Computing, Nvidia, Operating Systems, Reviews, Smart Home, Smartphones, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Windows

VRWorld: Our Most Popular Stories of 2017

While we have recently covered our choices for the Top 10 VR/AR Stories of 2017, and while some of those stories happened to also be among the most popular amongst our readers last year, there were also a number of additional stories that proved popular. In this piece, we take at the top ten stories — based on reader popularity — in 2017. #10: Bethesda’s VR World: DOOM VFR, Fallout 4 VR and Skyrim PSVR This summertime article addressed how AAA game developer Bethesda was poised to bring a dramatic improvement to VR gaming with the then-pending releases of Doom VFR, Fallout 4 VR and

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Google, Hardware, News, Oculus, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR)

Google’s VR sculpting software adds new features

On Monday, Google announced upgrades and several new beta features to its Google Blocks VR object sculpting software. The improvements build upon the six-month-old platform’s features, making it easier to use and also responding to feature requests from users. New items include three alternatives to the original “desert” theme modelling environment and improved snap-to-object and mesh-snapping functionality. More comprehensive features can also be enabled by users, with the caveat that they are considered in beta, and as such may have some unresolved bugs. These include: a non-coplanar face mode; a loop subdivision feature; edge, face and vertex deletion; worldspace grids; a volume insertion ruler; an

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Education, Google, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Lenovo makes major push into education market

Lenovo this week announced that it is launching Lenovo Virtual Reality Classroom, a comprehensive VR educational system that leverages the company’s upcoming Mirage Solo headset. The move appears to mark a significant attempt by the company to make transformative inroads into educational markets. Available in the U.S. starting this April, with a fall launch slated for Canada, the Virtual Reality Classroom package includes: Lenovo Mirage Solo VR headsets; high-performance, pre-configured routing hardware; specialized content; a Lenovo tablet with specialized software for teacher use; a commercial warranty; top-tier product support; and either a custom cart or case with integrated charging (based on bundle size). The platform

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Analysis, , Google, Hardware, Oculus, Qualcomm, Virtual Reality (VR)

The most anticipated VR headsets of 2018

Although we are likely to see incremental improvements to many popular VR headsets over the next twelve months, it appears some of the biggest VR news in 2018 may be focused on entirely new headsets from popular and less prominent manufacturers alike. Following is a summary of four pending devices that we feel are the most anticipated new headsets that will be released this year. Pimax 8K Having set a new funding record on Kickstarter for a VR project, the Pimax 8K appears ever-closer to winding up on the heads of its backers. The headset — the first to provide 8K resolution — is scheduled

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Microsoft, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Windows

Microsoft reportedly reorganizing mixed reality staff

Microsoft is reorganizing its Windows Mixed Reality team, including combining its Everyday Magic and Evoke Studios into a new organization, with resultant job cuts. The news was first reported earlier this week by industry analyst Brad Sams at Petri.com. According to Sams, the changes will see the team that developed Paint 3D, Remix3D, Mixed Reality Viewer, and other mixed reality apps (Everyday Magic) merged with those responsible for the Photos and Videos app. Reportedly, the new team will be headed by Chris Pratley. Pratley, who has worked for Microsoft since 1994, currently serves as the Corporate Vice President / Studio Manager responsible for Story Remix,

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Google, Hardware, News, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR)

Plex brings big screen social experience to VR

This week, client-server media player maker Plex, Inc. announced the availability of Plex VR, an app that brings the company’s product suite to Google Daydream-enabled VR devices. As explained on the company’s blog, the new app allows users to view Plex Media Server content while immersed in a VR environment. Not only does this equate to a “big screen” viewing experience for video content, including 3D and 360/180 video, but it also brings real-time social features to the platform. Those using Plex VR can join up to three friends in a virtual, “sleek” apartment or drive-in movie theater to watch the same content in real-time,

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Google, HTC, News, Oculus, Rumors, Virtual Reality (VR)

HTC Vive Focus ships in China, may have US debut after all

Consumer electronics company HTC officially started shipping pre-ordered Vive Focus VR headsets at an event earlier this week, in what was heralded as the “world’s first on-stage in-VR customer product delivery.” The company also announced that forty pieces of VR content, including several games, are already available for the Focus. The news comes via HTC’s China Regional President of VR, Alvin Wang Graylin. The Focus is HTC’s first stand-alone headset, and is based on the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor which will power Lenovo’s Mirage Solo headset announced at CES 2018. Akin to the pending Lenovo offering, HTC’s Vive Focus also offers a 6DoF technology

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