Augmented Reality (AR), Auto, Business, Companies, News, Nvidia, startups

Alibaba Backed WayRay won Grand Prize on AutoMobility LA’s Top Ten

The Swiss-based company WayRay that makes augmented reality for cars, won the grand prize in a start-up competition at the Los Angeles Auto Show on Tuesday. It’s augmented reality driving system makes a car’s windshield looking like an actual video game. WayRay made its way into this year’s Top Ten after being selected out of over 300 applicants thanks to its innovative approach to user experience design. After making it to the Top Three alongside an impressive group of innovative startups from around the world, including Ohio-based GhostWave and Israel’s Innoviz Technologies, they were named this year’s winner of the 2017 Top Ten Automotive Startups Competition. They developed holographic augmented-reality technologies for advanced

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Companies, Entertainment, News, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables

Cult bus simulator “Desert Bus” is now available in VR

What was once called “most boring”, “the worst” but also “cult” and “legendary” bus simulator Desert Bus, now got its VR version. Yes, that’s right, now you can have all the thrill of an eight-hour bus trip with no breaks in VR. It lets you experience what it’s like to be at the helm of the action, driving all the way from Tucson, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada, in real time. Based on the 1998 Sega CD game Desert Bus, created by the magic and comedy duo Penn and Teller, Desert Bus VR stays true to the original game’s premise, tasking the player with driving a bus between Tucson

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Android, iOS, Mobile, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Axonom brings CPQ-VR solution to mobile

Axonom, a provider of software that combines Configure Price Quote (CPQ) technology with VR, yesterday announced the release of their Powertrak VR Design Viewer for smartphones. The newly-released Powertrak VR Design Viewer builds upon Axonom’s foundation in non-mobile VR solutions for product configuration, configured product visualization, and room planning. “VR hardware tethered to a machine, like the HTC Vive, is very effective on the trade show floor but mobile VR can be used both on-site and shared to decision makers off-site,” said Mike Belongie, COO at Axonom. “It’s the most economical and compelling way to distribute immersive 3D product designs and floor space planning layouts

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Augmented Reality (AR), Auto, News, VR World

Nissan’s new AR experience to leverage the Star Wars universe

Nissan is poised to unveil an augmented reality experience throughout their North American showrooms that intends to educate customers on the automaker’s safety- and driving assistance-related technologies. The Nissan “See the Unseen” experience, which leverages characters from the Star Wars universe including stormtroopers and droids, will be rolled out by early December, preceding the upcoming release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi. “In our collaboration with Lucasfilm’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, we have brought ‘Retail Theater’ to Nissan showrooms and found exciting ways to engage customers with a new world of technology,” explained Jeremy Tucker, vice president of Marketing for Nissan North America. “While

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Augmented Reality (AR), Dell, HP, HTC, News, Oculus, Sony, Virtual Reality (VR)

Global quarterly VR headset shipments achieve new record

Uptake of virtual reality hardware continues its upward trend, according to the latest numbers from independent market analysis firm, Canalys. In a report issued Monday, the company indicated that total global shipments of VR headsets set a new milestone, exceeding one million units during the just completed 3rd quarter. Meanwhile, Sony, Oculus, and HTC continue to dominate the VR hardware marketplace, with an 86% combined market share. One driver of headset acquisitions was a temporary-turned-permanent price cut by Oculus in Q3, who matched Playstation’s VR headset price point at $399. This precedes the upcoming release of Oculus’ $199 Go standalone headset, expected next year. “VR

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Augmented Reality (AR), Graphics, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

New real-time 3D lighting technique heralded as “Holy Grail”

A pair of computer scientists from Aalto University in Otaniemi, Finland, will soon present a new approach to computing real-time lighting effects that represents a major improvement in both efficiency and accuracy over existing methods. The new technique was developed by Ari Silvennoinen, a PhD candidate in computer science and Jaakko Lehtinen, an associate professor of computer science and scientist at NVIDIA. They pair will be presenting their research at the ACM’s SIGGRAPH Asia 2017 conference in Bangkok this week. Current lighting approaches in games and VR environments are computationally intensive, particularly if software attempts to perform pixel-by-pixel computation of all light paths in a

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Augmented Reality (AR), Business, Companies, Entertainment, Intel, News

Will.i.am released AR App that bring Comics to life

Rapper, producer, Black Eyed Peas member and philanthropist will.i.am released an augmented reality app that takes the pages of the graphic novel he published earlier this year and brings them to life. Masters of the Sun: The Zombie Chronicles, published by Marvel Comics, is about a hip-hop group from East Los Angeles who decide to take on an ancient, alien god who transforms drug dealers and gangsters into zombies. The story mixes Egyptology and L.A. gang culture, and the first issue was released back in August, co-written by Benjamin Jackendoff and illustrated by Damion Scott. Characters in the graphic novel get voiceovers from a laundry list of celebrities including Jamie Foxx, Queen Latifah, Mary J

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Companies, Entertainment, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Worlds Biggest VR Entertainment Park opened in China

China opened the doors to its first virtual reality theme park, which aims to ride a boom in demand for virtual entertainment that is set to propel tenfold growth in the country’s virtual reality market, to hit almost US$8.5 billion by 2020. This 134-hectare park in southwestern Guizhou province promises 35 virtual reality attractions, from shoot-’em-up games and virtual rollercoasters to tours with interstellar aliens of the region’s most scenic spots. The 330-acre (134-hectare) park in southwestern Guizhou province promises 35 virtual reality attractions, from shoot-‘em-up games and virtual rollercoasters to tours with interstellar aliens of the region’s most scenic spots. “After our attraction opens,

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Entertainment, Event, Exclusive, Interviews, Montreal Virtual Reality Market (MVRM), News, startups, Videos, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Montreal Virtual Reality Market shines light to city’s movement in AR/VR

November saw the third instalment of the Montreal Virtual Reality Market – an industry gathering held in Montreal. With over 50 virtual- and augmented reality companies located in the city, Montreal is well positioned to burst in the VR industry: four engineering schools, massive video gaming industry (Ubisoft, EA, A2M, Gameloft to name a few), world-renowned filmmaking and developed IT market surely makes for a lot of qualified skills floating around here. We visited the event nestled at Societe Des Arts Technologique (Technological Arts Society) to check up with the AR/VR startups coming out of this French-speaking city and converse with some of them. Drone

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Blockchain, Business, Cryptocurrency, Education, Entertainment, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR)

Learn about the Bitcoin Blockchain in 3D VR

In the world of virtual reality, everything (well, almost everything) can be perceived and understood better. Same goes with cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin can definitely be hard to imagine, as it’s not physical asset. Even if you are familiar with the way blockchain works, it is still hard to put it in the real picture. Usual graphs and charts make the life even more miserable, so somebody actually discovered more evocative way of depicting bitcoin. We are presenting you – Blockchain 3D Explorer. Kevin Small has created a blockchain explorer that enables anyone to view the bitcoin blockchain in 3D or VR. The British developer is planning

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Event, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

VR gains foothold in destination marketing at Miami Art Week

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), announced yesterday that they will be unveiling what they herald as a “groundbreaking destination marketing program” at Miami Art Week (Dec 7-9, 2017). Entitled “Vegas: Alter Your Reality,” the experience consists of five, two to three-minute long VR content pieces showcasing various aspects of Las Vegas. “We are committed to constantly exploring new and innovative avenues through which we can reach potential visitors,” said Cathy Tull, senior vice president of marketing at the LVCVA. “By uniting art and virtual technology to reflect the vibrancy of the destination, Vegas: Alter Your Reality will inspire travelers to create their

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Apple, Breaking, Business, Companies, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables

Apple Acquires VR Headset Company Vrvana

Apple recently purchased Vrvana, a startup company that developed an augmented reality headset called Totem, reports TechCrunch. Two sources with knowledge of the deal confirmed the acquisition, but Apple declined to comment and did not provide its usual acquisition statement. Apple did not deny the story, though, and several employees who were previously with Vrvana are now with Apple. The price of aquisition is supposed to be around $30 million. It sure is no secret that Apple was interested in creating an augmented reality headset, and has been looking to create one for release sometime in 2020. Now the company may have gotten a bit of a jump

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Augmented Reality (AR), startups, Virtual Reality (VR)

First VR Cemetery as a solution for overcrowded Hong Kong

A lack of space for cemeteries in crowded Hong Kong clashes with the age-old Chinese tradition of reverence for one’s ancestors, according to Reuters. Enterpreneur Anthony Yau’s firm, iVeneration.com, offers users the ability to create virtual headstones anywhere in an augmented reality landscape of Hong Kong, including such unlikely places as a downtown park. In that way, it’s possible to save  up to $130,000 in burial services. The idea is that residents get the ability to pay their respects digitally using VR & AR technology. Users will be able to create virtual headstones of their departed loved ones and place them anywhere within augmented environments

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Android, Augmented Reality (AR), iOS, Mobile, News, Smartphones, Tablets, Virtual Reality (VR)

Mozilla Announces Mixed Reality Development Program

Mozilla unveiled a new development program and team that will build upon their existing work to bring VR and AR technologies to the web. The program will focus on the integration of devices, headsets, frameworks and toolsets to increase flexibility in VR/AR web development. The organization indicated that although they have been working in this space for over a year, this new team was formalized only in recent weeks. In their announcement, the organization pointed out that although there have been substantial developments this year in bringing VR/AR technologies to the web, there are still gaps in terms of cross-platform compatibility. Mozilla indicates their new

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Companies, Entertainment, News, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables

Try Walking In Stormtroopers Boots

A new Star Wars Virtual Reality experience is heading to London’s Westfield shopping centre next month, allowing fans of the sci-fi franchise to experience a mix of interactive sets and real-time effects. Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire is an experience that is also opening to the public next month at Disney resort location in Florida and California. It brings virtual reality technologies courtesy of VR startup The Void to the storytelling wits of Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB to the dazzling theme parks know-how of Disney. What results is a walk-around VR experience that will drop plenty of jaws and open up quite a few people to the state of

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Augmented Reality (AR), Companies, News

Williams-Sonoma purchases 3D imaging and AR firm

Home products retailer Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (WSI) announced this afternoon that they intend to acquire Outward, Inc., the developer of a 3-D imaging and augmented reality platform intended for the home furnishing and decor industries. WSI will reportedly pay $112 million US to acquire the company. The move comes in a furniture retail environment that sees WSI’s competitors increasingly using AR technologies. Target released a “See It In Your Space” component to their website earlier this year, to allow shoppers to visualize furniture placement. Meanwhile, IKEA leveraged iOS 11’s AR features in their released-in-September “IKEA Place” app. WSI says this acquisition will enable them to build

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Android, Entertainment, iOS, News, Toys, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Book publisher launches traditional book-VR combo for kids

Hollywood, California-based book publisher Quantum Storey announced this week that it has launched the world’s first virtual reality book series for children. Aimed at younger kids, their “Operation YOU” series combines traditional printed books with virtual reality. The books include access to a companion Android and iOS app, as well as Google Cardboard goggles. The first title in the series, which is now available exclusively at Walmart, is entitled “Morning Nightmare.” It confronts the challenges children experience boarding school busses. According to the company, the VR app places children in the book’s environment in the first person, virtually transforming them into the book’s main character.

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Apple, Augmented Reality (AR), Hardware, Rumors, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

More hints emerge about Apple’s AR effort

While the web is perennially rife with speculation about Apple’s plans to develop a hardware device in the AR/VR space, a somewhat under-the-radar story out of Taiwan may shed a bit more light on the company’s plans. As reported by the Nikkei Asian Review, one of Apple’s supply chain partners, MacBook and Watch assembler Quanta Computer, hinted during their most recent earnings conference call that they may be playing a significant role in the development of an augmented reality device. Reportedly, such a device built by Quanta would be released no later than 2019. Although Quanta executives did not state for whom they would be

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Augmented Reality (AR), Companies, News

MAC Cosmetics embraces augmented reality

On Tuesday, MAC Cosmetics announced the launch of an augmented reality mirror that allows customers to preview how certain MAC shades and looks will appear when applied to their own faces. The mirrors are based on a 3D video makeup rendering technology developed by Canadian firm Modiface. Called “Virtual MAC,” the AR mirrors have been introduced in US standalone MAC locations, setting the stage for a broader global rollout early next year. “The new ModiFace-powered mirrors provide an unprecedented level of realism and fidelity that bring to life our brand’s unique sense of colour and artistry,” said Tim Tareco SVP Global Creative, Visual Merchandising +

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

University of Michigan to launch interdisciplinary VR program

The University of Michigan this week announced plans to launch an augmented, virtual and mixed reality (AVMR) graduate certificate. The initiative spans fourteen schools, colleges and offices, and involves thirty-two faculty members. The institution is touting breadth in their proposed program, compared to emerging programs elsewhere. “We have the health sciences. We are a top engineering college with proximity to one of the world’s greatest manufacturing centers. We’ve got an entertainment venue, Michigan Stadium, where we can play to live audiences of 100,000 seven times a year,” said Thomas A. Finholt, dean of the School of Information, University of Michigan. “So, we are a very

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