Breaking, Business, Game Developer Conference (GDC), Hardware, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

VR Hardware Startup Virtuix Offered $32 million in Public Series A Funding

If you are a hardware startup, your life is very difficult. First, getting funding from traditional sources (Venture Capital, banks) is borderline impossible, as there’s always ‘an app for this and that’ that promises the world. Yet, we’ve seen sizable ‘wins’ with hardware startups which took the public route and seek out funding on crowdfunding websites such as Indiegogo or Kickstarter. Perhaps the best known publicly funded startup is Oculus, who gathered $2.44 million on Kickstarter. As we all know by now, the company was acquired by Facebook in a $2 billion, all-cash transaction. But, Oculus is far from being the only one. Several years ago, we attended

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Breaking, Game Developer Conference (GDC), Graphics, News, Reviews, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR)

Basemark Launches New VR Benchmark VRScore

At the CryTek event today at GDC 2016, Basemark unveiled VRScore, a VR benchmark. This is a first ultra-demanding, high-resolution, high-texture benchmark coming from the team that worked together on numerous iterations of Futuremark’s 3DMark. They spun of from Futuremark, developing ‘Basemark’ benchmark for mobile devices, and now are entering the dynamic VR scene. “From the first moment sitting down with the Crytek team through the development of VRScore, we’ve been thoroughly impressed with their talent and hard working,” said Tero Sarkkinen, founder of Basemark, “Today, we together put the fruits of this collaboration for the first time for the general public to see and I am

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AMD, Breaking, Game Developer Conference (GDC), Graphics, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

AMD Unveils Radeon Pro, Graphics for VR

The wait is over. Nine months after AMD introduced Fiji GPU architecture featuring revolutionary High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) standard, the company launched Radeon Pro Duo, “world’s most powerful platform for Virtual Reality (VR), capable of both creating and consuming VR content.”  AMD originally showed the board on the same day it launched the Fiji architecture, on E3 2015 – but the company took its time to make the product ‘as perfect as possible’. Getting two GPUs to work in perfect sync is a daunting task, as each GPU serves one eye – delivering almost 210 million pixels each second.  Few weeks ago, AMD teased us with initial results from the SteamVR benchmark, where

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AMD, Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Game Developer Conference (GDC), News, Virtual Reality (VR)

AMD Powers Sulon Q, Microsoft HoloLens Competitor

The holy grail for the VR and AR experience will be creating a headset which will have sufficient computational power to deliver seamless VR experience, yet be in a compact form and untethered from computers or smartphones we are forced to use today. First development product which offers such capabilities is Microsoft HoloLens, which recently started accepting pre-orders for Development Kits. At $3000, Hololens is a steep buy-in to Microsoft’s vision of holographic computing. Enter Sulon, a startup from Toronto located not far from AMD’s Canadian HQ (formerly known as ATI Technologies). On the 30th Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco, Sulon unveiled the Q, world’s first high-performing, stand-alone, all-in-one, thether free, ‘wear

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Breaking, Entertainment, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Toyota Spain Creates a Scary VR Experience

Can a scary driving experience persuade a potential customer to purchase a vehicle from one brand instead of another? The answer to that question comes from Toyota Spain, which partnered with Antiloop Studio to create an immersive virtual reality experience. Antiloop Studio then created the experience using an Oculus Development Kit and Xsens motion capture suit, in a sizable Motion Capture Studio. The tagline for the experience is: “What would you do if your car stalled in the middle of a drawbridge that was opening? Would you defend your family against a bear if your engine suddenly gave it in front of one? Could you fight off a gang

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Entertainment, Gaming, Hardware, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Manus VR Glove Dev Kit Pre-Orders to Open for $250

Manus VR gloves

On Thursday, Manus VR said that pre-orders for the first Manus glove developer kit (DK1) will open its doors in Q2 2016. For $250, the kit will contain one pair of VR gloves, two wrist-mounted holders for the HTC Vive controller, various cables, plug-ins for the Unity and Unreal engines, an open-source SDK for five operating systems, and a demo game for each of those platforms. The kit will ship out to customers in Q3 2016. Currently compatible with only the HTC Vive VR headset, the Magus gloves will work on Android, Windows 7 and newer, Linux, Apple’s iOS and Mac OS X platforms. According

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Breaking, Entertainment, Graphics, Hardware, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

2016 Coachella Goes VR with Google Cardboard VR

Coachella VR

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Annual Festival has teamed up with Vantage.tv to provide fans with a virtual reality experience right out of the Welcome Box. This package, while containing the customer’s tickets, entry wristbands, a welcome guide, and other goodies, will also provide a VR headset based on Google Cardboard that can be used with special Coachella VR apps listed on Google Play and Apple’s iTunes. The Welcome Box will be distributed to ticket holders in early March. “Before, during, and after the festival in April, fans from all over the world can be immersed in performances from top artists, experience 360-degree panoramic

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Entertainment, Gaming, Graphics, Hardware, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Developers Says PlayStation VR is The Best

Sony PlayStation VR

WCCFTech recently spoke with developer Alfonso del Cerro, the founder of Pentadimensional Games, in a short interview about creating the upcoming first-person superhero game, Megaton Rainfall. This will be one of the first titles on Sony’s highly-anticipated PlayStation VR headset and is also slated to arrive on the PC. He said Sony first showed interest in the game when the company played it last year at GDC 2015. “They were looking for projects for PSVR and I was showcasing MR at the Indie Megabooth,” he told the site. “Since then, they have been very friendly, they helped us with the visibility, showing the game in videos,

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Breaking, Entertainment, Gaming, Graphics, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Valve Releases Session 1, 2 of SteamVR Dev Roundtable

Last week, Valve Software published the first session of its SteamVR Developer Roundtable, featuring VR developers Justin Liebregts (Cloudlands Minigolf), Andy Moore (Fantastic Contraption), Dylan Fitterer (Audioshield), Richard Stitselaar (Arizona Sunshine), Dave Walsh (Elite Dangerous), and Joachim Holmér (Budget Cuts). These “pioneers” spent just over 26 minutes talking about their experience developing virtual reality games for the SteamVR platform and the upcoming HTC Vive. The video opens up with Andy Moore talking about Fantastic Contraption, a building game for VR. He says most people don’t know how mind-blowing VR can be because they mostly see screenshots. He makes a valid point: after jumping into a

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Breaking, Intel, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

iStaging: Is this Taiwan’s Second Act?

If you live in Taiwan or in APAC area of the world, there’s a lot of conversations saying that Asian (manufacturing) Tigers such as Taiwan ‘missed the boat’ when it comes to shared economy and application economy. While it is true that Taiwanese are quite conservative and cost-driven (which is a shame), the whole island has a specific positive vibe. Luckily, the future does not rest on old-school management which is still baffled why they cannot win contracts which are service-intensive, there is a new generation of Taiwanese which are connected in more ways that one. In fact, I would dare to publicly state that Taiwanese are one of most

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Breaking, Gaming, News, press releases, Virtual Reality (VR)

Valve Announces The Lab, New VR Experience

Valve Corporation sent out a short press release citing that SteamVR Benchmark is not the only piece of VR software the company is working on. During the next week’s Game Developer’s Conference, the company plans to introduce a compilation of different VR demos, targeting their SteamVR platform (read: HTC Vive). Without further adue, this is the press release in its entirety: “VALVE ANNOUNCES THE LAB March 7, 2016 — Valve has announced plans to debut “The Lab,” a compilation of new VR experiments, at next week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, CA. Set in a pocket universe of Aperture Science, “The Lab” offers multiple ways

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

Coca-Cola, McDonald’s launch VR Headsets

In just a few days difference, giants of fast food and soft drinks announced their entrance into the world of Virtual Reality with their products. Regardless of what you think about nutritive values of Coca-Cola soft drinks and McDonald’s Happy Meals, they just launched initiatives that have the potential to become world’s best selling VR ‘manufacturers’. When Google released its Cardboard VR, the company also released schematics and invited as much companies as possible to adopt the Cardboard VR design in their packaging. Less than a year later, these drawings are becoming real world products, thanks to Coca-Cola and McDonalds. Coca-Cola came out with a concept of

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Breaking, Business, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

HTC Vive: Pricing Inequality Strikes Again

Pre-orders for HTC Vive are showing clear market response to the lure of Virtual Reality. In mere first 10 minutes of pre-orders, HTC sold no less than 15,000 units, and it kept going for the past 24 hours. Unofficially, we learned that the company received more than 10 times the orders from those first 10 minutes, meaning the sale results are already into six figures. Given that this is an at least an $800 part which requires at least a $1000 PC to run properly. However, pricing is far from being the same and depending where you live, it might be worth to avoid the official

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Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Event, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR)

AR and VR on Austin’s SXSW Festival

It’s almost that time of the year – when the capitol of Texas gets to ‘Keep being Weird’, as the hordes of attendees hit the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival. Just like Sundance Festival, what was originally an indie event turned into a mainstream / hipster bonanza, with large corporate sponsors which offer plenty of distraction. Sadly, that distraction means you might miss what did you come for in the first place. This year, SXSW is celebrating 30 years. Simon Solotko, an AR/VR evangelist who organized several successful multi-million dollar Kickstarter campaigns, teamed with several of his former colleagues from AMD and several other companies and organized AR/VR Austin

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Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Microsoft, News, VR World

Get Microsoft HoloLens for $3,000

Even though February 29th happens once every four years, but February 29th, 2016 will stay in memory as a very important day for Virtual and Mixed Reality. First, HTC launched pre-orders for its Vive Virtual Reality system, then Microsoft launched pre-orders for its Augmented Reality system, HoloLens. Naturally, there is a big difference between the two – HTC Vive will retail for anywhere between $799 (United States) to €899 (European Union), while Microsoft is starting to sell HoloLens Development Edition. This is far from a retail product, and just like Google Glass of yesteryear, Microsoft is pushing all the cost down to developers, and probably not loosing any money

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Game Developer Conference (GDC), Gaming, News, , Virtual Reality (VR)

The Three Games I Want to Play in VR This Year

Virtual Reality (VR) has undergone an amazing evolution in the last two decades. Can anyone recall the bulky headsets I’ve seen in the 1990s, which offered a less than ideal experience. I’ve tried Fortix VFX-1, which was a capable device, released well ahead of its time, which could have started a VR revolution back then – but failed to become a mainstream technology. But today VR is living its renaissance, with headsets like Oculus Rift and its likes, and can bring on a new revolution. Especially in gaming. The problem with the headset above was the fact that it asked a very steep price, but those were

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AMD, Breaking, Gaming, Graphics, Nvidia, Reviews, Virtual Reality (VR)

Valve VR Test: AMD Wins Against NVIDIA?

Update March 17th, 2016 16:52 GMT – The AMD R9 Nano x2 was the performance achieved by Radeon Pro Duo. We have discussed the SteamVR benchmark with Valve and they are working on expanding the benchmark score to incorporate more frames. The Fidelity test will stay just that (“Crank it up to 11”), but the benchmark will be enhanced to factor in the developments of graphics hardware. We will follow up as more developments around SteamVR happen. Original Article: Over the past three weeks, we saw two VR vendors releasing their tests to check can your machine deliver an optimal VR experience or not. As it goes, one vendor (Oculus) did

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Analysis, Breaking, Entertainment, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

Holofilm Productions Launches VR Porn Website

For as long as there was technology, adult entertainment industry, or ‘porn’ for short often adopted new technologies faster than the regular mainstream market. VHS vs. Beta war in 1980s was won when Sony refused to allow porn industry to shoot on Beta, companies behind HD-DVD and Blu-ray both rallied against the porn – only to have adult industry resorting to online streaming and ultimately leaving the physical medium to history. When it comes to Virtual Reality, one of biggest challenges is how to record the content and avoid motion sickness, where your VR experience turns nauseating. Adult entertainment production company HoloFilm Productions developed a new path called NoSick(TM). So

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Analysis, Breaking, Business, News, Samsung, Smartphones, Virtual Reality (VR)

Samsung’s New Strategy: VR First

Over the past decade, we’ve heard ‘Mobile First’ mentioned by all major CEOs, with companies shifting their focus to ‘Mobile First’, a strategy where development of solutions for mobile devices takes precedence over everything else. Mobile First saw the rise of ‘client lite’ computing, but not in a way IBM and Oracle have hoped, with the major benefactor being Intel – its x86 servers powered almost every cat video you saw on your favorite social network. The dawn of mixed reality will require completely different focus. While delivering content on a small surface screen was nothing more than shifting the desktop and communication from the workplace, the advent

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Breaking, Business, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Cedars-Sinai Hospital Adopts Virtual Reality

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center is a world-renowned medical institution which is on the forefront of medical research. Alongside with Mayo Clinic and Betty Ford Center, it is perhaps the most known medical ‘brand’ from the United States. There are many theoretical approaches to patient therapy and aiding the healing process, but only research work on the field can bring results or debunk theories. This is exactly what the medical experts at Cedars-Sinai decided to do by launching a virtual reality project. The Center embedded several Virtual Reality devices in different aspects of patient therapy / treatment, and monitored the results. Medical trials included Samsung GearVR device, as well as Oculus Developer

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