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

Meet The HTC Vive Focus

HTCs latest announcement is a new headset, but it’s not the Vive 2 or anything. Not exactly. The new headset is called the HTC Vive Focus, and for the time being it seems to be aimed squarely at the Chinese, so how relevant it is for Western consumers is a valid question to ask. Even without Western availability, though, the Vive Focus is still worth talking about, for multiple reasons. First and foremost is that it’s a completely standalone headset, meaning that it functions separately from any smartphone or PC. Its internal hardware boasts, among other things, a high-res AMOLED display and a Snapdragon 835

Read More...

Gaming, Hardware, Microsoft, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Windows

SteamVR Preview Coming To Windows Mixed Reality, Requires Higher Specs

SteamVR is essentially an extension of Steam, allowing a virtual hub for playing and purchasing VR applications. Since its release with the HTC Vive (and eventual compatibility with the Oculus Rift), SteamVR has been a favorite among VR enthusiasts everywhere. With the debut of Windows Mixed Reality headsets on PC, many were left wondering if Mixed Reality headsets could support the same software, and it looks like the answer to that question is a resounding yes. SteamVR is coming to Windows Mixed Reality headsets in an official preview state on November 15th, 2017. Full, official compatibility is somewhere further down the line, likely depending on the

Read More...

Gaming, Holiday Shopping Guides, HTC, News, Oculus, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and PSVR All Getting Black Friday Discounts

Holiday bells are jingling and everyone’s getting excited about celebrating the Winter holidays with their loved ones. A part of those festivities, at least in the United States, is to spend the day immediately after Thanksgiving engaging in free-for-all brawls in markets all over the country for Black Friday sales. Virtual reality and virtual reality gaming is not an exception from this craze. While Black Friday is still a few weeks out, many businesses are already announcing VR-centric bundles and Black Friday discounts for those who want to jump into VR gaming while saving a little bit of cash. This, in addition to the recent

Read More...

Companies, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Is VR Safe For Children? Leeds University Warns Against It

We’ve covered VR and how it relates to health quite a few times before, but this is one of the first times in recent memory that we’ve covered a negative concern. As covered by The Guardian, researchers at Leeds University have performed a study on twenty children aged between 8 and 12. These children were tasked with playing a virtual reality game for 20 minutes, after which they were physically examined for signs of problems with eyesight, nausea and so on. The results indicated a short-term disruption in “stereo-acuity”, which describes the ability to perceive depth. At least one child also suffered a brief case

Read More...

Business, Companies, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Lucky Sevens From Sony Coming Monday

Looks like Sony is feeling pretty bold. At the upcoming Paris Games Week event, Sony will be unveiling 7 new games for the PS4, and at least a few of them are very likely to be PSVR titles. Proudly boasting in their blog post that “E3 was just the beginning”, Sony announces a livestream starting at 8 AM Pacific Time where they’ll provide updates on 21 games and announce seven new titles for PS4 and PSVR. Starting from 9 AM Pacific Time, they will cover these titles in detail with trailers and in-depth looks at each of them. If you aren’t in Paris, don’t worry: there

Read More...

Entertainment, Gaming, HTC, News, Oculus, VR World

Indie Darling Five Nights At Freddy’s Now Playable On HTC Vive and Oculus Rift

Love it or hate it, the Five Nights At Freddy’s franchise is a pop culture sensation. Thanks to frequent releases from its single developer, Scott Cawthon, a highly dedicated fanbase, an intricate lore, and gameplay perfect for Let’s Players, FNAF exploded onto the scene a few years ago. Its influence is still felt today by a renewed interest in indie horror titles, and under Cawthon’s own encouragement, fangames for the FNAF series have been popping up for quite a while. The most recent of these, and perhaps the most impressive of them, is a partial remake of the first game in Virtual Reality, called Vive

Read More...

Hardware, HTC, News, VR World

HTC Vive Pulls Out All Stops For Halloween

HTC is one of the biggest names in virtual reality, thanks mainly to their excellent HTC Vive headset. The HTC Vive has remained a favorite among enthusiasts for quite a while and even experienced steady price dropping since its release. As some may know, the Vive was produced in collaboration with Valve, the company behind Steam. As a part of Steam’s annual Halloween sale, HTC is pitching into the action by offering a free copy of Star Trek: Bridge Crew for those who purchase a Vive through its Steam page. But it doesn’t stop there: that wouldn’t be enough to justify its own article. In

Read More...

Entertainment, Mobile, News, Smartphones, VR World

Stranger Things Season 2 Gets An AR Snapchat Tie-In

Did you hear? Stranger Things Season 2 is out, and Snapchat has apparently implemented a full AR tie-in for its release. Snapchat has offered various filters for some time now, but with the addition of world lenses (made late last year), the application is now capable of light augmented reality experiences. Most world lenses for Snapchat aren’t very interactive and are just a way to line up a cool Snap or two. The new Stranger Things-themed world lenses, however, allow you to interact with the iconic lights from Joyce Byers’ living room. Tapping different items in the AR recreation of this location from Stranger Things,

Read More...

Exclusive, Gaming, HTC, Interviews, Oculus, VR World

Interview With Joseph Johnson, Owner of a Colorado Springs VR Arcade

After looking into local VR arcades in my area, I found one- Epic VR– based in the nearby Citadel Mall of Colorado Springs. After a brief email exchange with the owner of the place, I scheduled an interview with him in the middle of October. VR arcades offer quite a lot for people who can’t afford to buy full-fledged gaming setups and VR headsets, but still want to dip their toes into the next level of immersion in gaming. For this reason, I decided that an interview with the local owner of a VR arcade could prove educational, both for myself and for you, our

Read More...

Entertainment, News, Oculus, Samsung, VR World

Blade Runner 2049 Receives “Memory Lab”, A New VR Tie-In App

Ah, Blade Runner. Not only is Blade Runner one of the most influential films of the 80s, it’s also one of the greatest fathers of modern sci-fi. The importance of science fiction to the advancement of technology is difficult to understate: not only are almost all of our greatest technical advancements inspired in some way by retro science fiction stories of old, but even modern sci-fi serves to inspire new generations of geeks and nerds the world over. Blade Runner was praised back then for its excellent character exploration and world-building, and because of that an exploration of the world of Blade Runner in VR

Read More...

Augmented Reality (AR), Business, Samsung, Space and Science, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Wearables

SyncThink Updates Their Eye-Sync Headset For Offline Compatibility

Virtual reality is seemingly constantly up in the news for surprising utilizations outside of gaming, and today’s story on the Eye-Sync headset is no different. The Eye-Sync headset comes from the business SyncThink, which focuses on eye-tracking technology to supplement existing VR implementations. Eye-tracking isn’t a new concept to the world of virtual reality: businesses like Tobii and FOVE have been known for quite a while for working on eye-tracking tech, but usually for gaming implementations. With the introduction of the Eye-Sync, however, eye-tracking has taken a decidedly different direction: the diagnosis of head injury, particularly concussion. Those who have undergone head trauma and suffered

Read More...

Companies, Education, News, Space and Science, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Virtual Reality Is Making Waves In Healthcare

As VR’s influence continues to be felt across all industries, its rise to prominence in healthcare could be seen by many as a foregone conclusion. After all, medical and scientific fields have long been fans of the latest, greatest computing technologies, especially for working with advanced sets of data. Virtual Reality has two particular applications in healthcare: treatment and training. In the context of treatment, Virtual Reality is being used to relieve pain, to assist in treatments for Parkinson’s, and even to help people work through anxiety and PTSD. Virtual Reality is particularly effective for psychologists who want to have an easier time guiding their

Read More...

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

UK Gamers Will Have More Chances To Try Out PSVR

While Sony’s PSVR headset for their PS4 console has helped lower the pricing barrier of entry to the world of VR gaming, the fact remains that many people still have yet to experience VR. These people, in turn, have little incentive to pay a couple hundred dollars to get that experience. Fortunately, the industry is aware of this problem. VR arcades are popping up all over the place, offering a way to experience VR for the first time without spending hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on the required hardware. Gaming console and smartphone manufacturers took some inspiration from the growing popularity of the HTC

Read More...

Gaming, News, Space and Science

VR Astronaut Training Exists Now. What’s Going On?

This story of VR astronaut training begins, like many others, on Reddit. On February 26th, 2015, the developers of the indie VR title Earthlight unveiled the first prominent screenshots of their game, which blew away audiences due to sheer attention to detail. Overnight, the post became a sensation, and although we didn’t know it yet, the poster woke up the following morning to Reddit PMs from NASA laboratories. To the sufficiently well-versed in U.S. federal agencies, this shouldn’t be too much of a surprise. Primitive Virtual Reality has been used by the U.S. Military and NASA for literal decades. While the earliest forms of their simulations were,

Read More...

Back to School, Breaking, Hardware, News, Rumors, Samsung, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Wearables

Samsung’s Odyssey VR Headset Is On The Horizon

Samsung Odyssey VR

An odyssey is an epic journey, and Samsung’s Odyssey VR headset seems to be the latest upcoming step in theirs. The Odyssey VR headset has been long time coming (since the leak of its name in early 2016), and a number of leaks have indicated that its formal announcement is coming very soon. Let’s tackle a few of these. One of the most interesting comes from WalkingCat on Twitter. Earlier this week, they managed to find and post images of what may be the Odyssey, which turns out to be a Windows Mixed Reality headset. Supporting the idea that this leak may be for the

Read More...

Breaking, Gaming, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR)

VR Climbing Game Cloudborn enters Steam Early Access

Logtown Studios is an indie VR gaming developer that is entering the scene with Cloudborn, a first-person VR climbing title for HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. Those who have been following the VR gaming scene for a while will notice immediate similarities to The Climb, a game from Crytek (the developers of Crysis) utilizing the CRYENGINE to offer a realistic, Oculus-exclusive climbing title. Cloudborn takes the basic gameplay aspects of The Climb and tries to take it in a new direction by offering a larger-scaled world with stylized cel-shaded graphics reminiscent of titles like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Wind Waker.

Read More...

Biotech, Breaking, Education, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Is Virtual Reality A Path To Real-Life Health Treatments?

A key pillar of psychiatric treatment is guided imagery. Guided imagery is the practice of, with guidance, stimulating the senses and inducing mental images for the sake of health therapy or relaxation. You often see things like this in the movies – a person visits a psychologist, is told to lay on a couch, close his or her eyes, breathe and think of something peaceful. That’s a very simplified version of what guided imagery is. Guided imagery, it turns out, doesn’t need to be done with the imagination alone. In fact, with sufficiently-advanced technologies, guided imagery can be done in a way that’s much more

Read More...

Augmented Reality (AR), Back to School, Breaking, Education, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Virtual Reality Creeps Into Virginia Commonwealth University

Virginia Commonwealth University, or VCU for short, is the latest educational facility to install a Virtual Reality lab on their premises. This lab is known as the MHRG VR Lab (Modern Heuristics Research Group Virtual Reality Lab), and on Friday they opened their doors for the first tour of the lab by students and other university personnel. In addition to the expected implementations of VR and AR setups at the university, the new lab offered access to a device offering advanced 3-D touch and haptic feedback. Devices like this go far beyond the basic haptics offered by current VR gaming controllers, allowing users more complete

Read More...

Analysis, Breaking, Entertainment, Exclusive, Gaming, Guides, Hardware, startups

Top 10 YouTube Channels for Hardware

Today, we are introducing a new section with our top picks for hardware-focused YouTube channels. These will generally lean toward PC gaming, but the ways that they approach PC gaming and hardware will differs depending on the channel. We’re hoping to provide enough variety and quality content to get you started on tech YouTubers. Before we jump right into the list, let’s take a moment to discuss how everyone got here. As this article is an ambitious, multi-act tale, we’d probably call this “The Exposition”. How did the channels made it to this list, and what we will be looking for in our upcoming lists?

Read More...