Analysis, Augmented Reality (AR), , Hardware, HTC, Microsoft, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Oculus, Opinion, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Top 10 AR/VR Stories of 2017

Although 2017 has come and gone, its impact on the augmented/virtual reality industry will undoubtedly be felt for decades to come. While it remains to be seen if 2017 will be recognized as the year AR/VR finally made its first real push into the mainstream, there were a veritable plethora of events that occurred last year that will continue to influence the industry. After substantial contemplation, we have picked what we at VRWorld believe to be the Top Ten VR/AR Stories of 2017. Here they are, counting down from #10: #10 – Pimax 8k First discussed by VRWorld last January, the Pimax 8k would go

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Augmented Reality (AR), Companies, Dell, Hardware, HTC, Microsoft, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Samsung, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables, Wearables

VR headsets price cuts lead to quarterly sales of more than 1 million units

Virtual reality has taken the world by storm in the last couple of years – except it has not. Although the excitement about its potential to become nothing short of awesome has been discussed in great detail in the press, this hasn’t translated into sales. While people will gladly pay amounts close to $1,000 for smartphones that allow them to “play real money online video casino games on all jackpots”  and others as fluidly as possible, they seem to be reluctant to invest a smaller amount into VR gear that has a similar – or often smaller – price. And while it would be a

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Augmented Reality (AR), News, Oculus, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

Father-son duo bring VR to lacrosse training

While VR training tools are already relatively commonplace for players and coaches in many professional sports, such technologies are not often seen at the high-school, college and amateur level. When it comes to lacrosse — and as VRWorld has learned, possibly other sports in the near future — that may be changing, thanks to the father and son team at Nelson Design Group. Doug, a high school lacrosse coach with nearly two decades of experience, and his son, who is well-versed in software development, have combined their efforts to create a comprehensive lacrosse goalie practice system. Leveraging an Oculus headset, their software allows lacrosse goalies

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Artificial Intelligence, Companies, Education, News

Alibaba’s AI wins human in Reading Comprehension

The battle between man and the machine went pretty devastating for the “homo sapiens”. Chinese multinational e-commerce, retail, internet and technology conglomerate Alibaba, has developed an artificial intelligence model that actually beat humans in a Stanford University reading and comprehension test. Based on more than 500 Wikipedia articles, Stanford’s set of questions are designed in the way they are teasing out whether machine-learning models can process large amounts of information before supplying precise answers to queries. Alibaba’s Institute of Data Science and Technologies pronounced that its deep neural network model scored 82.44 in the Stanford Question Answering Dataset (SQuAD) on Jan. 11, beating the human

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Artificial Intelligence, Auto, Business, Companies, News, transportation, US

Ford will invest $11bn in electric vehicles by 2022

Ford Motor Co decided that they will significantly increase their planned investments in electric vehicles to $11bn by 2022 and have 40 hybrid and fully electric vehicles in its model line-up. At the Detroit Auto show that happened last week, the company’s chairman, Bill Ford, said that the whole investment is much more higher than what was previously announced ($4.5bn by 2020). He also added that this investment includes costs of developing dedicated electric vehicle architectures. General Motors, Toyota and Volkswagen have already outlined ambitious plans to offer more electric vehicles and also did General Motors who made his announcement last week about new driverless vehicle.

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Business, Companies, News, Qualcomm

Qualcomm going for European Approval for $39B NXP acquisition

Qualcomm Inc. is set to clinch European Union antitrust approval for its $39 billion acquisition of NXP Semiconductors during the next week. The EU opened an in-depth probe into the Qualcomm-NXP deal last June concerning that the deal may lead to higher prices, less choice and reduced innovation in the semiconductor industry. NXP has already significant presence in Austin after they acquired Freescale Semiconductor in 2015 for $11.9 billion. Qualcomm’s commitments will now include a pledge not to buy NXP’s standard essential patents, plus assurances that the rival products will still function with NXP’s, according to one of the people familiar with the matter. Qualcomm agreed to

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Artificial Intelligence, Asia Pacific (APAC), Business, China, Companies, Fintech, News, Technology Security

AI Chatbots are rapidly changing the ways of banking in the world

The biggest Hong Kong bank, HSBC Holdings, is starting the New Year with a new chatbot. Chatbots are computer programs that typically use text-based live chat as an interface to carry out tasks for customers on behalf of the business. Now they are emerging as an inexpensive way to introduce artificial intelligence (AI) in banking. Even though they are practically machines, banks are trying to give their chatbots a human touch which is why HSBC named its newborn Amy. This is not the only bank form Hong Kong. Hang Seng Bank already has their virtual assistants named HARO and DORI. This move came as the city’s

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Artificial Intelligence, Auto, Companies, News, Technology Security

General Motors announced their driverless car for the next year

General Motors will no longer need an engineer in the front seat who was managing the robot that controlled its self-driving Chevrolet Bolt. There will be no more steering wheel and also, the pedals will be gone. This  announcement came last week and it is more than obvious that this auto-giant got the confidence from it’s engineers. The car will be the fourth generation of its driverless, all-electric Chevy Bolts, which are currently being tested on public roads in San Francisco and Phoenix. And when they roll off the assembly line of GM’s manufacturing plant in Orion, Michigan, they’ll be deployed as ride-hailing vehicles in a

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2018, Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality (AR), Cloud Computing, Companies, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Hardware, HTC, Mobile, News, Qualcomm, Smartphones, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: Lenovo introduces quartet of new AR and VR technologies

Lenovo used this week’s CES in Las Vegas to highlight several aspects of their 2018 product and service lineup in the augmented reality and virtual reality spaces. These announcements spanned both consumer and commercial/industrial applications, and include the Lenovo Mirage Solo headset, Mirage Camera, C220 Smart Glasses and NBD AH Cloud 2.0. Lenovo Mirage Solo and Mirage Camera with Daydream Billed as a “new take on VR consumption and creation,” this complementary product duo is targeted primarily at consumer markets. The Mirage Solo stands as the first stand-alone headset offering that is part of Google’s Daydream platform; an ill-fated offering from HTC was announced and

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2018, Android, Apple, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Hardware, Internet of Things (IoT), Mobile, News, Samsung, Smartphones

CES: uSens strives to bring augmented reality to billions of users

HCI systems manufacturer uSens, Inc. announced the availability of uSensAr, a smartphone augmented reality engine, this week at CES 2018 in Las Vegas. uSensAR is designed to run optimally on lower-end Android hardware, including systems with lower-resolution cameras and comparatively underpowered CPUs. “ARcore currently only serves about 30 million Android phones, which is just five percent of the entire Android smartphone ecosystem,” said Dr. Yue Fei, uSens CTO and co-founder. The company indicated their platform could expand the reach of AR technologies to an estimated two billion smartphones. “With the release of uSensAR, we are allowing developers, smartphone manufacturers, and content creators to build those

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HTC, News, Oculus, Smartphones, Virtual Reality (VR)

HTC ends year on sour fiscal note

Smartphone and VR headset manufacturer HTC ended the year with a steep decline in revenue, according to a news release issued by the company last week. The company announced unaudited consolidated revenue for December 2017 of $4.02 billion TWD (approximately $136 million USD), and total unaudited consolidated revenue from January to December 2017 of $62.12 billion TWD (approximately $2.1 billion USD). Those revenue numbers represent a 29% month-to-month decline and 36% year-over-year decline. Reports indicate that HTC’s yearly revenue marks its worst performance in over a decade. Some of the revenue decline may be due to aggressive price cuts during 2017, which saw both HTC

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2018, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Hardware, News, Samsung, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: LooxidVR headset will track your eyes and brain

Tech startup Looxid Labs announced this week that it was awarded a Best of Innovation Award in CES 2018’s Virtual Reality category for its LooxidVR headset. Previous winners in the category have included Samsung, for their Gear VR headset, and Google, for their Tilt Brush 3D/VR painting system. LooxidVR is a mobile-based VR headset, similar in design to Samsung’s Gear VR and Google Daydream View, with the added features of having embedded EEG sensors and eye-tracking cameras. The result is that the headset can empower tracking its wearer’s brain activity, eye movement and pupil dilation. “It is really encouraging to see our technology and potential

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2018, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), HTC, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

CES: Meet the HTC Vive Pro

Thanks to their critically-acclaimed Vive headset, HTC became one of the biggest names in virtual reality two years ago. The Vive Focus, a standalone headset, was announced in 2017 but didn’t quite satiate people’s hunger for a Vive successor. Fortunately for the world of VR, HTC is pulling out the big guns at CES 2018 with the new Vive Pro. The biggest improvement from the Vive to the Vive Pro is in the display. The original HTC Vive boasted a 2160 x 1200 resolution with 1080 x 1440 per-eye. The Vive Pro’s display comes in at a whopping 2880 x 1600 resolution, with 1440 x 1600

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2018, Apple, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Mobile, News, Wearables, Wearables

CES: Lumus provides sneak peak of its AR pipeline

Lumus, a developer of transparent displays for augmented reality hardware is showcasing its latest technological innovations this week, at CES 2018. The company is demoing both its new Vision optical engine — a solution in the AR visor space — and is also providing a sneak-peak of technologies that will be used to empower a glasses-style AR device. The Vision engine boasts a top-down, 40 degree field of view at 1080 pixel resolution in full colour and daylight viewability, displayed via transparent lenses that do not distort the user’s view of their natural environment. “From ongoing discussions with tier one companies and major ODMs working

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2018, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Graphics, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: YI Technology and Google introduce VR camera

Imaging technology firm YI Technology today announced details of its YI Horizon VR180 Camera at CES 2018 in Las Vegas. The camera, created in collaboration with Google’s Virtual Reality team, is billed as an easy-to-use, stereoscopic 3D camera. The camera features seamless integration with YouTube and Google Photos, and is compatible with Google Cardboard, Google Daydream, PlayStation VR and other certified viewers. Notably, content created by the camera can also be viewed easily in 2D. “We truly believe that it should be easy for everyone to create and share virtual reality experiences,” said Sean Da, CEO of YI Technology. The camera supports 3D video at

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2018, Amazon, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Internet, Microsoft, Mobile, Mobile Computing, News, Smartphones, Wearables

CES: Rokid unveils AR glasses prototype

AI and robotics firm Rokid has unveiled a prototype of its planned augmented reality product, Rokid Glass, this week at CES. The company, better known for its home assistant products (that bear similarities in looks and functionality to Amazon’s Alexa Dot and Google’s Home Mini), appears to be making its first foray into the augmented reality space. Reportedly, the glasses will operate as a standalone headset, but also provide functionality to connect to smartphones or other devices via Bluetooth or WiFi to bolster processing power and network range. The glasses run a variant of Android 6.0 — suggesting it may eventually leverage Google’s ARCore to

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2018, Artificial Intelligence, Auto, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Entertainment, Hardware, Intel, Internet, Mobile, News, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: Intel CEO Krzanich keynote highlights AI and VR

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich used Monday’s CES 2018 keynote to highlight how data is changing our work and personal lives, while simultaneously pushing forward technological innovation both at his company and within the larger technology sector. His keynote also specifically addressed Intel’s new initiatives in the VR space. “Data is going to introduce social and economic changes that we see perhaps once or twice in a century,” Krzanich said. “We not only find data everywhere today, but it will be the creative force behind the innovations of the future. Data is going to redefine how we experience life – in our work, in our homes,

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2018, Augmented Reality (AR), Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Google, Hardware, Mixed Reality (MR), News, Samsung, Smartphones, Sport, Virtual Reality (VR)

CES: NextVR announces realism-boosting upgrades

NextVR, a leading provider of systems for broadcasting live sports and music events in virtual reality, yesterday previewed several upgrades to its technology platform. The announcement was made in conjunction with the opening of CES 2018 in Las Vegas. In what was billed as a “sneak peek,” NextVR unveiled three major initiatives: introducing Six Degrees of Freedom (6DoF) technology; improving fidelity of transmitted content; and adding augmented reality to their platform. NextVR is currently compatible with the Samsung Gear VR headset or Google Daydream View combined with an appropriate smartphone, PlayStation VR, or Windows Mixed Reality system. “VR is the most demanding visual medium ever

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3D, Amazon, Augmented Reality (AR), CPU, Graphics, Hardware, HTC, Internet, Mobile Computing, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Smartphones gain PC-strength VR capabilities via new codec

NGCodec, a company that specializes in developing algorithms, silicon logic and FPGA implementations for cloud video processing, this week announced the availability of their potentially transformative cloud-based encoding technologies via the Amazon AWS Marketplace. The company’s RealityCodec acts as a low-delay H.265/HEVC encoder, which allows much of the processing load of VR video streams to be shifted into the cloud. The codec also boasts sufficiently low latency that it can reliably deliver VR streams to untethered, mobile, VR head-mounted displays. “We have worked diligently to bring our advanced video codecs to the Amazon Cloud and to demonstrate the potential for cloud media and virtual reality,”

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Amazon, Augmented Reality (AR), News

Amazon patent reflects another push into 1.7 trillion dollar industry

A patent issued on the first business day of the new year may herald a breakthrough in online fashion retailing. US Patent 9,858,719 was Issued on January 2nd to Amazon Services Inc. It suggests the company is developing an augmented reality-type system consisting of a mirror, display and camera combination that allows individuals to virtually preview the look of clothing prior to purchase, and to do so while also virtualizing their locale. The invention, as described, appears to go a long way towards solving the many issues pertaining to look and fit that tend to plague the purchase of fashion items online. Currently, these challenges

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