There’s been quite a bit of movement in Virtual / Augmented / Mixed Reality recently. I’ve commented before that setup complexity is one item that’s holding back adoption.
Here are two further efforts towards a solution to this complexity, and also some other VR news.
Firstly, there are more ‘all in one’ headsets coming, so that basic-graphics experiences and 3D movie watching will be possible without a PC. There was an announcement like this just recently from HTC.
Secondly, Microsoft has just made a big announcement around HMD (Head Mounted Display) support in Windows 10, and Samsung has partnered to deliver one of the first headsets (there are many). In the case of this Samsung, complexity is reduced because the headset handles all positional tracking from the headset itself – there’s not need for external sensors to be set up around one’s room.
It’s worth noting that Microsoft is championing ‘Mixed Reality’ (MR) i.e. blending the real and virtual worlds. You’ll see that all of these HMDs have dual front-facing cameras so that parts of the external world can be seen on the screens, blended with whatever the VR items are. Alternatively, the HMDs can just operate in full VR mode.
In otherVR news, PiMax seems to be close to delivering their 8k (4k resolution per eye) headset. I purchased their previous 4k version and there is a noticeable detail improvement over the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. I did find that the screen had a bit of delay on it and the colours were a bit washed out, but it was still an impressive piece of technology and really just a step towards 8k.
VR is coming in areally big way! An easy to use, cost effective, and compelling VR kit is likely just a couple of years away now. The societal impact is going to be much much larger than most people expect.