Items tagged with augmented reality

Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook made some rather positive comments on the current state and potential future for augmented reality (AR) technology. In an interview, Cook stated that he sees AR as being the "bigger bet" over virtual reality (VR), and it's not hard to agree. VR at this point is more expensive than AR, regardless of the solution you use. And as you might expect, the cheaper systems available often offer a less than compelling experience. On the other hand, AR can be used by anyone with a smartphone, and there are myriad scenarios for it, whether it be for gaming or commercial... Read more...
There's no denying that modern virtual reality can provide one of the most interactive experiences on the planet, and can transport you to another universe like nothing else. However, VR can be expensive and very disorienting for users. If we're talking about mobile VR, such as with Samsung Gear VR, the cost-of-entry is minimal, but the experiences are also not quite on par with full-fledged systems like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive. It's for that reason that many believe AR, or augmented reality, has the brighter future. We've seen proof from Pokémon GO that the world is ready to... Read more...
One of the things that separates the HoloLens from the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive is that it doesn't need to be tethered to a powerful PC—the hardware bits required for augmented reality effects is all integrated into the eyeglasses. At the center of it all is a custom designed Holographic Processing Unit (HPU) that Microsoft's been pretty closed lip about. Until now, that is.The HPU is a co-processor built on a 28-nanometer manufacturing process by TSMC. It has two dozen Tensilica-brand digital signaling processing (DSP) cores with custom Tensilica Instruction Extension (TIE) instructions that allow... Read more...
Microsoft just made it easier to purchase its HoloLens Development Edition hardware if you live in the United States or Canada. There's no longer an application process or need to be invited, you can just head over to the online Microsoft Store and buy the augmented reality eyeglasses outright, though you better bring a bag of loot—it costs USD $3,000 in the U.S. and $4,000 in moose bucks (CAD). That's a chunk of change though it's not really intended for consumers at this point. As its name implies, the Development Edition is aimed at developers at this early stage, and if you have the requisite... Read more...
Take a stroll outside to any just about any area and you're likely to run into people playing Pokemon Go on their smartphones. It's the hottest thing right now, surpassing Candy Crush as the biggest mobile game in the U.S. of all time, and iPhone users are spending more time playing Pokemon Go than updating their Twitter statuses or logging into Facebook and Snapchat. It's a remarkable use case scenario for augmented reality and the potential audience that's out there, but could you imagine if Pokemon Go existed for Microsoft's Hololens headset? You don't have to imagine it—a development studio... Read more...
You may have noticed that a bunch of kids or young adults have started running around your neighborhood perhaps looking a little suspicious (or at least preoccupied with their smartphones). They're not necessarily up to no good, they're probably caught up in the Pokemon Go craze, a new mobile app that uses augmented reality to encourage players to capture Pokemon characters. It's super popular, but if you plan to partake, be careful of your surroundings so you don't end up being robbed in real life. The unfortunate side effect of Pokemon Go's immense popularity is that opportunistic armed robbers... Read more...
Qualcomm is in the process of optimizing its Snapdragon System-on-Chip (SoC) line to support Google's Project Tango augmented reality technology, the company announced this week. Support for Tango has already been extended to its popular Snapdragon 820 and Snapdragon 652 processors, while future Snapdragon 800 and 600 tier products will also dance with Tango. What this means is one less chip in phones designed for augmented reality chores based on Google's Project Tango technology. Rather than implement certain functions on an extra piece of hardware, the necessary sensors and algorithms are embedded... Read more...
Google has been teasing us with its Project Tango augmented reality (AR) platform for years. We’ve seen breathtaking demos on both smartphone and tablet hardware, but no OEMs have stepped up to the plate to deliver Tango-enabled hardware — until now. Lenovo has come out swinging with its PHAB2 Pro phablet, which packs modern internals and a full-fledged AR experience for users.We should start off by saying that to our knowledge, the PHAB2 Pro will be the first commercially available Lenovo smartphone in the United States. We’ve been drooling over Lenovo’s smartphone products for quite some time,... Read more...
VR and AR companies might have a huge focus on gaming right now, but both technologies can be extremely useful in many other practical, real-world applications as well. The Navy underscored this recently with the unveiling of a new augmented reality heads-up display that doesn't look quite as sleek at consumer VR kits, but it has a job that's of a far more critical nature than shooting zombies or putting shaped blocks in correct holes. Straight out of the Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division comes the Divers Augmented Vision Display, a smart helmet of sorts that divers wear underwater... Read more...
When the topic of virtual reality, augmented reality or mixed reality comes up, one of the first things people think of is gaming. And that's fair, considering the high profile releases of headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. However, there are applications outside the realm of gaming that hold some exciting possibilities for these emerging technologies, a notion Microsoft is reminding everyone of by bringing holographic experiences to Outlook Mail and Calendar. Both apps are now supported on HoloLens, Microsoft's AR headset that's currently in development. Microsoft is pitching these versions... Read more...
Some amazing things are happening in technology. We have augmented reality and virtual reality solutions finally getting off the ground, and gadgets like Google Glass and Microsoft's HoloLens have given us glimpses of what the future might be like. But alas, these early looks only paint a partial picture of where we're headed, and if we're not careful, something utterly frightening awaits us. That frightening thing is portrayed in all too believable fashion in a 6-minute concept film by Kelichi Matsuda called Hyper-Reality. The film depicts a typical trip to the city in atypical fashion, at least... Read more...
It's fair to say we're at the early stage of the modern virtual reality and augmented reality movement that's poised to transform the industry. That's evidenced by first generation consumer headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, both of which are promising but also expensive and require a relatively powerful PC to run. The VR/AR category will evolve, though a Canadian startup is taking a stab at what a second generation head mounted display (HMD) might be like and it has the backing of AMD. The startup is Sulon and it's built what it claims is the "first and only all-in-one, tether free, 'wear... Read more...
Snapchat may have began as a simple photo and video sharing application for mobile users, but it's since morphed into a social juggernaut. Part of the reason why is because the concept is so simple and addicting, though there's more to it than that. The slow roll out of additional features like filters have kept users hooked, and they've also hinted at what might be in store for the future of Snapchat, one that trades the smartphone for smart glasses.Sean Holister at CNET did some extensive detective work and what he discovered is rather interesting. For one, he notes that Snapchat is now home... Read more...
It wouldn't be like Intel to miss a major movement in technology, so don't expect the chip maker to sit on the sidelines while all these other companies chase the next big thing in virtual reality, augmented reality, and whatever else. Intel has plans to participate as well, specifically with an AR headset that will tap into its 3D camera technology.Intel already has a foot in the door with RealSense, a technology that uses multiple cameras to achieve a wide range of fancy effects. Building an AR headset around RealSense seems like a logical extension of that technology, especially with all the... Read more...
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