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

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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

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Business, Companies, HTC, News, Virtual Reality (VR)

HTC announces arts funding initiative

Yesterday, HTC VIVE announced a new initiative to advance arts and cultural initiatives using VR technology. Called VIVE Arts, this new program will inject millions of dollars into the development of VR installations in collaboration with organizations worldwide. The new program will build upon HTC’s existing arts and cultural institution partnerships, which currently include London’s Royal Academy of Arts, Taipei’s National Palace Museum, Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle (French National Museum of Natural History) in Paris, Washington D.C.’s Newseum, and St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum. In addition to being used in on-site VR installations, content developed under the program will be made available in the VIVEPORT app

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

Logitech develops tangible solution to VR keyboard input

Logitech yesterday announced the availability of the BRIDGE developers kit, an SDK intended to assist application developers with the challenge of effectively enabling text entry in virtual reality environments. The kit, designed to work with the HTC Vive, includes a Logitech G gaming keyboard, a Vive Tracker to enable proper keyboard positioning, and associated software. The software interfaces with the HTC Vive Tracker to seamlessly integrate a virtual keyboard (complete with key animations) and the user’s hands into any SteamVR app. “The developer’s application does not need to manage anything; the overlay appears automatically as soon as the associated Vive Tracker is turned on,” explained

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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

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Apple, Augmented Reality (AR), Business, Companies, Google, HTC, Microsoft, News, VR World

Digital marketing will grow to more than $162 billion

According to an International Data Corporation report, the digital reality market will grow from $5.2 billion last year to more than $162 billion in 2020. Corporate CEOs in any field would be hard-pressed to find a multibillion-dollar industry with an anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 181.3% over the 2015–2020 forecast period in any sector other than digital reality. Also, established by HTC earlier this year, the Virtual Reality Venture Capital Alliance, or VRVCA, is an organisation comprising of VR-invested firms and companies who believe VR is the next big medium. With HTC at the forefront, the VRVCA has set aside US$12 billion to grow VR, with investments

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Breaking, Event, Gaming, Hardware, HTC, Mobile, News, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Wearables

HTC Unveils Vive Standalone VR With Qualcomm Snapdragon 835

The first day of ChinaJoy in Shanghai, China saw the largest number of VR announcements we’ve seen since we started to talk about Virtual Reality. Perhaps the biggest announcement of the first day is HTC, who launched a Vive Standalone headset. The first Vive Standalone VR headset will be available only on the China market, utilizing Viveport as its official content platform, expanding the user case scenario for HTC’s VR strategy. “The new headset is set to deliver an outstanding standalone VR experience, making it the best-in-class premium device for this segment in the China market. Interested VR developers may register at www.viveport.com/standalonevr-cn to apply

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Breaking, Gaming, Graphics, Hardware, HTC, News, startups, Virtual Reality (VR)

HTC Enables Wireless Vive VR Design, New Features for 2017

While the second generation handsets from HTC and Oculus are getting shape hidden from the public eye, there are significant changes being announced or previewed for the upcoming Holiday season. The new controllers were ‘leaked’ a while ago, and should arrive as bundled and separate purchase (for people that have already purchased the Vive). Still, the biggest hurdle for the mass adoption of VR is, or it was, the necessity of a wired connection between the headset and computer. Headset must receive a very high bandwidth picture, so high that a signal from the computer to the headset had to be done by wire, using fastest

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Gaming, Videos, Virtual Reality (VR)

Serious Sam Goes VR as Croteam Picks HTC Vive

Croatian independent video game developer Croteam is best known for its Serious Sam franchise. Recently, they explained why they chose to develop Serious Sam for the HTC Vive platform, rather than other competitors. Earlier in the summer, Croteam caused a storm of comments by disclosing the strategies Oculus uses to secure exclusive titles. One such story included talking about a lifetime exclusivity clause – which means that Oculus-exclusive titles will never stop being exclusive. This was later debunked in an article on PC World: “Oculus did approach us with an offer to help fund the completion of Serious Sam VR: The Last Hope in exchange for launching first on the

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Android, Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Event, Gaming, Google, Mobile, Mobile Computing, News, Operating Systems, Smartphones, Software Programs, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World, Wearables

Google Limits Publishing Daydream Apps and Games

Google Daydream VR platform is set to launch in fall 2016, but only a select group of developers will be able to publish Daydream apps. Google Play store is limiting access until some point in 2017. While any Android developer can submit Cardboard applications to the Google Play store, Google decided to limit Daydream apps releases. Only developers are accepted into the Daydream Access Program (DAP) will be allowed to publish apps starting with October 4th, the day of Daydream launch. Everyone else will be allowed to publish apps “early next year.” Developers can apply now to join the DAP. The application form consists of some basic information gathering,

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Entertainment, Graphics, Hardware, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

StarVR 5K Headset Launches with IMAX in Q4 2016

Acer, Starbreeze and IMAX recently announced the official rollout of the StarVR headset. This headset comes with the second highest resolution on the market (8.29 Million pixels from PIMAX is the record) but offers the highest optics characteristics on the market. The resolution of 5120×1440 pixels amounts to 3.69 million pixels per eye, almost three times more than what HTC and Oculus offer today (2.84x more). When you pair this resolution with an 210 degree, ultra-wide field of view and other contemporary features you get what might be the best VR experience out of 2016 device range. The range and the levels of freedom are making VR experiences as

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Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Entertainment, Gaming, Opinion, , , Virtual Reality (VR)

The World of Mobile VR After Pokemon Go

Virtual Reality Gaming isn’t coming, it’s already here. With the introduction of Google Cardboard and the Daydream VR platform,  Oculus and HTC discrete VR headsets and GearVR headsets for even smartphones like the Samsung’s Galaxy S7, the first tentative steps towards virtual reality gaming are being taken. With Facebook announcing its buy-in of virtual reality technology for a whopping $2 billion, Google has responded with its own VR system, a simple piece of cardboard that can turn your Android phone into a neat virtual reality headset. This all proves that VR gaming is here to stay. Already, the range and quality of available games is encouraging.

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Breaking, Business, E3, Entertainment, Gaming, Graphics, Hardware, Interviews, startups, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Jake Rowell: How The best VR Experience Came to Life

After spending the past ten days in Hollywood, we met with numerous industry members who are working on next generation of Virtual Reality content. There’s little doubt that we are witnessing the dawn of a new medium, with Hollywood leading the charge when it comes to content development. As an industry, we need immersive experiences that will show what VR brings to the table and so far, there are two experiences one should go through: WeVR’s “theBlu” for HTC Vive and Crytek’s “The Climb” for Oculus Rift. For a pure enjoyment, theBlu experiences simply are the best way to immerse a person in virtual reality,

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Augmented Reality (AR), Breaking, Business, Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Gaming, Hardware, News, Virtual Reality (VR), Wearables

Cher Wang: Vive to Become a Standalone Company

Back in October 2015, we had a conversation with an senior industry executive close to HTC. In that conversation, the soft-spoken executive claimed that HTC’s virtual reality group will go through a major change, and that the future for Vive will be “what the Radeon Technologies Group spin-off was for AMD, but (HTC) will go beyond that.” According to our source, HTC was used as a logistics and legal vehicle to jump-start the new company, which will go much further than a simple headset designer and manufacturer. Thanks to Digitimes, we learned that Chinese-only newspaper Commercial Times confirmed the upcoming spin-off from none other than Cher Wang herself. The CEO

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AMD, Asia Pacific (APAC), Breaking, Business, News, Nvidia, startups, Virtual Reality (VR), VR World

Vive X: Meet the $100 Million VR Accelerator

Even though it ‘still makes phones’, HTC is in the process of reinventing themselves. The company was the first of major technology companies to replace “Mobile First” with the “VR First” corporate approach, putting themselves in an advantageous position while the giants such as Samsung are slow to change their path, which we covered exclusively here. High Tech Computer Corporation, which is the full name of the company started its life as a computer manufacturer (HTC 1.0), quickly moving to the world of Windows Mobile PDA’s (anyone remembers Personal Digital Assistant craze of early 2000s?) and manufacturing brilliantly designed smartphones (HTC 2.0). HTC 3.0 is all about Virtual Reality, and the

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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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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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Entertainment, Gaming, Graphics, Hardware, VR World

HTC Working on VR Headset For Smartphones, Tablets

The HTC Vive VR headset is slated to go retail on April 5. Based on Valve Software’s SteamVR platform, the Virtual Reality device packs OLED screens with a resolution of 1080×1200 per eye, and more than seventy sensors. Unlike the upcoming Oculus Rift, the Vive can work in a space of 15 feet by 15 feet, allowing users to move around the virtual world. However, the headset will cost a meaty $799 and require a somewhat beefy PC to support it. So what if you don’t have an extra $799 to spend on VR? There’s always the Samsung Gear VR for $99, but that requires a

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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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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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