Items tagged with AR

In March, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg went on a podcast to talk about the future of augmented and virtual reality. In his discussion, he explained that he wanted to see Facebook manufacture its own hardware and thought that the platforms would be the next big thing in tech. Furthermore, he explained that interacting with AR/VR worlds would require neural interfaces for human-computer interaction. Now, Facebook Reality Labs (FRL) Research is showing off technology in that vein. As augmented reality and virtual reality technologies mature and develop, new ways of interacting with these platforms are needed. If the technology is used in public, it would be not easy to use voice commands or have... Read more...
Last year, Facebook unveiled the Oculus Quest 2, a Snapdragon XR2 powered standalone VR headset for just $299. While the specs and features are nothing to balk at, it seems what is presently available as far as processing goes is not enough for Facebook. In an interview posted yesterday, Mark Zuckerberg delved into the future of augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), explaining that Oculus wants to rely less on other companies in Silicon Valley in the future and improve the overall user experience overall. Throughout the interview, one of the most important topics was having something of a full-stack ecosystem that includes custom silicon and a custom OS. At present, most VR or AR solutions involve... Read more...
At this year's Ignite conference, Microsoft unveiled a new mixed reality platform powered by Azure that brings holographic teleportation (or "holoportation") into the forefront of today's digital landscape. It is called Microsoft Mesh, and it uses 3D capture technology to beam images of people into a virtual scene, like when R2-D2 delivered a message from Obi-Wan Kenobi to Luke Skywalker (yes, we're nerds). "This has been the dream for mixed reality, the idea from the very beginning," said Microsoft Technical Fellow Alex Kipman. "You can actually feel like you’re in the same place with someone sharing content or you can teleport from different mixed reality devices and be present with people... Read more...
Rather than spending money on multiple monitors or even a whole PC, enterprise and private consumers could invest in mobile or PC-powered augmented reality (AR). This would allow for more data to be viewed and utilized while working wherever someone finds themselves. While Lenovo unveiled the ThinkReality A3 glasses, it sadly seems the overall mass market growth and adoption of AR has been slow.  Thankfully, Qualcomm is stepping in to give the market a boost with a new AR viewer reference design. The new Qualcomm XR1 AR Smart Viewer reference design is Qualcomm’s way to “deliver high-performance, immersive experiences, and lower power consumption” in an AR platform. The... Read more...
Rumors have been swirling that Apple is working on a mixed reality or augmented reality headset, potentially with dual 8K resolution displays and eye-tracking technology. The simple act of Apple releasing an AR/VR product is a potential game changer for the category. Adding to that, it's now being reported that Apple has teamed up with TSMC to make micro OLED displays for its upcoming headset. Apple and TSMC already have a longstanding relationship, with the latter being a major chip supplier for the former, including its fancy M1 silicon. But as far as displays go, this is an interesting arrangement. Micro OLED is a different animal than a traditional LED or OLED displays—instead of being... Read more...
There have reportedly been some major leadership changes at Apple recently. Sources from Apple have stated that Dan Riccio is now focusing on the company's augmented reality and virtual reality projects. His new leadership role will hopefully help Apple to overcome the delays its AR and VR devices have experienced. Riccio originally joined Apple in 1998. He previously served as the senior vice president of Hardware Engineering, but stepped down from the position last month. He was replaced by John Ternus who initially joined Apple in 2001 and has been a vice president of Hardware Engineering since 2013. It was announced that Riccio would be “focusing on a new project and reporting to CEO... Read more...
While virtual and augmented reality are cool technologies, they have not quite taken off as expected for several reasons. One of the biggest factors would be the cost of buying and using VR and AR, but what if that added cost came with stellar specs and a big brand name to back it up? Enter Apple: manufacturer of phones, laptops, tablets, and now perhaps mixed-reality headsets. Rumors have circulated that Apple will enter the market for years, but now more information has come out suggesting as much and more. Late in January, Bloomberg reported that Apple “is building a high-end, niche product that will prepare outside developers and consumers for its eventual, more mainstream AR glasses.”... Read more...
Augmented reality (AR) has had ups and downs over the years, from the original Google Glass in 2013 to Microsoft’s HoloLens in 2016 and the Enterprise Google Glass in 2019. Ultimately, the technology could prove to be incredibly useful, but it is a bit “out there” for most people. Now, Lenovo is entering the augmented reality ring at CES 2021 with the ThinkReality A3 Smart Glasses, which are some good-looking glasses that could boost AR's future. According to Lenovo, the ThinkReality A3 glasses are part of a goal to “deliver intelligent transformation in business and bring smarter technology to more people.” They state that how we work, learn, and interact is changing,... Read more...
We could all use more cute animals in our lives, especially during a year like 2020. Google has just released fifty new AR animals that are discoverable through Google search. The new animals range from house pets like cocker spaniels to more exotic creatures like zebras. The AR animals can be viewed on a device with Android 7 and up installed or an iPhone 6s or later device with iOS 11 and up. Unfortunately, this feature is not available on PC or Google devices like Nest Hub. Android users will need to go to google.com or open their Google app, while iPhone users should open Safari, Chrome, or the Google app. Users should then search for an animal and tap “View in 3D” if a 3D model... Read more...
If you are a fan of the Star Wars universe and the popular Mandalorian series on Disney+, boy do we have an app for you. Google and Lucasfilm worked together to bring "Mando" himself into your living room through the power of augmented reality. You can get this app on select 5G phones today and obtain new experiences weekly through October of next year. "The Mandalorian AR Experience" is a way to "Retrace the Mandalorian's steps, find the Child, and harness the Force, all featuring life-sized versions of your favorite characters." As it stands, only the events of Season 1 are brought to life, but that could change over time. Over the course of the next year, we will likely see events from future... Read more...
Halloween is now upon us as the spooky season comes to an end. To get into the spirit before October 31st, you will not need an Ouija board, just an AR capable device to summon ghosts and skeletons wherever you please. NASA has also joined the festivities by releasing a new sun image that looks suspiciously like a jack-o-lantern. Google is bringing spookiness to life with its new augmented reality features in Google Search. Using Google Search in app or browser on Android or iOS, users can use keywords in search such as “Halloween” or “Skeleton” to summon 3D augmented reality models of a ghost or skeleton. They will not always show up and are not in once place, so you... Read more...
Apparently, phone-based VR experiences were not the right call, for Google at least. Today, the company has announced it is sunsetting Daydream VR software and terminating sales of the headsets. After Android 11, the Daydream app may no longer work on mobile devices. However, third-party software may continue working on the platform. Back in 2016, the Google Daydream View VR headset began to ship. At the time, the possibilities for Google pushing VR were high. Google announced that apps such as “HBO NOW, HBO GO, and Netflix” would be coming to the platform. It was not just for content consumption, though. You could play games such as “LEGO BrickHeadz Builder VR, Underworld... Read more...
Nintendo is bringing Mario Kart into your living room, but not in the way you’d expect. With the new Mario Kart Live Home Circuit set, you can design and play on tracks in your home with the power of augmented reality. It is as simple as setting up the race gates and running the track with your kart. You can then enjoy it and play against AI or friends who also have a kart from the set. This is the sort of toy I wish I had when I was young. While racing cars on a grooved track is awesome, being put into the video game from real life is even better. With ease, your room, house, or any open space can become a racetrack in Mario Kart. To set things up, you use the four included gates and arrows... Read more...
For better or worse, COVID-19 has changed our way of life and how we do business – perhaps permanently. For school-age children and the American workforce, that has meant “telecommuting” or working from home instead of alongside peers in the office. Online collaborative platforms like Google Meet, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams have helped to facilitate the physical divide between people, but Qualcomm is pushing for even more advanced collaborative tools through augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) experiences, aka extended reality (XR). Qualcomm is touting its XR Optimized Certification Program, which allows its OEM partners to develop XR viewer glasses that can give... Read more...
Ruben Caballero left Apple in early 2019, where he had served as the head of Apple's 5G wireless program. The reason the executive departed Apple had to do with a change in development plans for 5G modems used in upcoming hardware products. After leaving Apple, Caballero became an advisor to a company called Humane, which was founded by former Apple employees. Reports indicate that Caballero has now been hired by Microsoft as a corporate vice president. His role at Microsoft will reportedly involve mixed reality hardware and AI technology. Information on his duties at Microsoft comes from his LinkedIn profile, and the responsibilities were reportedly confirmed by Microsoft. Hiring Caballero is... Read more...
Many people have been talking about the upcoming iPhone 11’s trypophobia-triggering cameras, but the device’s insides are the real attention grabber. The iPhone 11 will ship with Apple’s new U1 chip. Although the U1 chip’s Ultra Wideband technology will initially be used in a limited capacity, it could potentially power new augmented reality experiences and security features. First, what is Ultra Wideband (UWB) technology? UWB is a radio technology that is used for short-range, high-bandwidth communications. It is particularly useful for precision location and tracking and time-of-arrival-based localization. Apple’s UWB technology will be primarily used for spatial... Read more...
Apple takes its time bringing entering new product categories, and that appears to be the case with its upcoming AR headset. The clearest evidence ever that Apple has an AR headset in testing has surfaced from code hidden inside iOS 13. IOS developer Steve Troughton-Smith has found a readme file tucked inside iOS 13 that explains to Apple employees how to run augmented reality apps on the iPhone when a headset isn't available. The developer says that the code suggests the rendering might be handled on the iPhone itself and will work with an additional gamepad/motion control device. With the readme file telling workers how to test AR apps without having the AR headset, and no mention of AR tech... Read more...
Oculus CTO and legendary game developer, John Carmack recently went on The Joe Rogan Experience podcast where he talked about the state of augmented and virtual reality. Carmack talked a bit about Facebook's recent suggestions that the future of Insight and Guardian motion-tracking technologies is all-day wearable augmented reality glasses. He underscored that future isn't immediately on the horizon. Carmack also talked about other companies in the AR and VR space, such as Magic Leap. He said that Magic Leap has been underdelivering on its early hype. He says that technology hasn't advanced to the point yet where AR glasses can be made small enough for users to wear all day, and that Oculus could... Read more...
Although companies like Microsoft and Google have targeted the augmented reality glasses market with the HoloLens/HoloLens 2 and Google Glass respectively, a company called nReal has announced AR glasses aimed directly at the consumer market. The aforementioned glasses from Microsoft and Google comes with high price tags that make them more suitable for enterprise applications, but nReal's lower price point could be a big advantage. The company says that the nReal Light Consumer Kit will ship in limited quantities later this year for $499, while mass availability isn't scheduled to happen until 2020. The device connects via a USB-C cable directly to compatible "XR optimized" devices and is powered... Read more...
While virtual and augmented (VR and AR) reality hasn't taken off in the consumer space in a big way, its hardware and technologies are still being driven, but mostly with a focus on enterprise use as of late. Microsoft unveiled its HoloLens 2 augmented reality headset at MWC 2019 in February. The software giant was clear that the device wasn't aiming at the consumer market; rather it was more for enterprise customers. Later, word surfaced that Microsoft had won a contract with the U.S. military that would see the Army get a version of the HoloLens 2 for use on the battlefield, something that a small group of vocal Microsoft employees complained about, leaving Microsoft's CEO defending the contract.... Read more...
Google is no stranger to the augmented reality (AR) field, having helped introduce many people to the concept with its original Google Glass wearable. Although Google found some success in the enterprise market with Google Glass, it wasn’t exactly a ringing commercial success and those that dared to wear the eyewear in public were labeled “creepy” or “glassholes.” However, a new patent has surfaced which suggests that Google may working on a next-generation AR device that is similar in concept to its predecessor. The patent was actually published yesterday, and describes a “head-worn augmented reality display.” Attached to the frame... Read more...
Hardware and game makers thought years ago that the next big thing for gamers was virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) gaming. That has failed to happen, but adoption in the business sector is coming along much faster. Microsoft unveiled its Hololens 2 at MWC 2019 and aimed it at enterprise users. The software giant signed a big contract with the U.S. military to provide Hololens headsets for training in a deal that is worth $479 million, something some employees were against. Despite a recent patent application from Microsoft that showed an AR app for smartphones, a company executive has now admitted we are years away from consumer adoption of the tech. Microsoft's director of communications,... Read more...
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