Imagine that you're 40,000 feet above the ground, but instead of peering out a small oval window and looking at clouds (or darkness), you turn your head and see a dingo wandering about. Don't worry, it's not on the plane's wing feasting on wires and electronics, he's in your Gear VR headset. This is what Australian airline Qantas is working towards. Along with Samsung, Qantas has launched a new trial entertainment service that gives fliers a Gear VR headset during their flight.
We tried Microsoft's augmented reality demo and couldn’t stop smiling
Many suspected that Microsoft would toss its hat into the virtual reality headset game. After all, Oculus VR was successful enough with its Kickstarter campaign that Facebook ended up purchasing it for $two billion, and longtime console rival Sony jumped into the fray not long ago with its Project Morpheus. While Microsoft did reveal its own head-mounted display, the HoloLens isn’t competing in the VR space, but is instead paving new paths for augmented realities. We got a chance to try it ourselves and you’re probably wondering, “Is it any good?” Simply put, if it's executed correctly, it has the potential to be transformative.
Few things can top an Oculus Rift hack that involves hands and music
A Kiwi design student named Bryon Mallett has come up with Pensato, a virtual reality interface for controlling music devices and software that, unlike most other Oculus Rift-based projects out there, makes pretty good use of human hands. In a video he posted to YouTube back in September, Mallet can be seen creating some music — actually the “final compositional output” for his Masters of Design Innovation — using popular music creation software Ableton Live and his Penasto interface, which allows him to interact with various sound controls using a pair of custom VR gloves as if they were physical objects.
This may be the best way to control virtual reality
While virtual reality headsets are going through a renaissance period, VR controllers are still stuck in the Wild West. Many companies are trying to find the best ways to allow you to interact in these virtual worlds, but unfortunately, there is no clear great way to do it quite yet. To be fair, coming up with a solution that allows people to reach out into virtual worlds to pick up things with their hands is no easy task, but if anyone’s got a fighting chance at solving the puzzle, it’s Sixense.
Looks like Nvidia isn't the only GPU company equipped to take on VR latency
While PC gamers are excited about the release of Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 980 graphics card, it is the Oculus community that is gushing over the GPU. The 980 has become a darling of the VR community with Nvidia’s claims that the new Maxwell-architecture video card will cut latency by up to 50%. It also helps that Oculus VR used the GTX 980 on its systems at its inaugural Oculus Connect event held in September.
Oculus confirms that Crescent Bay prototype isn't for sale
If you recently ordered an Oculus Rift development kit 2, but are still waiting for it to arrive, you might be wondering if Oculus will let you hold off on DK2 in favor of the newer, snazzier Crescent Bay prototype. At least, that’s a situation we found ourselves in.
Oculus making steady progress on road to consumer Rift
At its two-day Oculus Connect developer conference in Los Angeles this week, Facebook-owned Oculus VR introduced a new, improved version of its Rift virtual reality head mounted display (HMD). Called Crescent Bay, this latest prototype packs a number of improvements over the DK2 model. These improvements, the company says, are enough to ensure a level of immersion “that’s impossible to achieve with DK2.”
Some exciting things are happening in the world of virtual reality, and we're not just talking about the Oculus Rift. Multiple companies are jumping on board with the VR movement, including chip maker Qualcomm, which unveiled its Vuforia mobile vision platform that developers can use to build augmented reality (AR) applications for a new generation of digital hardware.
The concept of a bug bounty program is nothing new, and even Facebook will line your pockets with cash if you discover a qualifying security vulnerability in the social network or select acquisitions it's made. Until now, however Oculus Rift was exempt. Facebook has now extended its bug bounty program to Oculus Rift, which joins other Facebook acquisitions such as Instagram, Parse, Onavo, and Moves.
Oculus Rift will virtualize the ticket blaster experience
If you've ever been to a Chuck E. Cheese birthday party before, then you're familiar with the Ticket Blaster -- a phone booth sized contraption filled with single tickets, plus a special 1,000 ticket piece of paper. The kid celebrating his or her birthday gets to slip inside and try to grab as many tickets as possible as a vortex of wind swirls them around. Kids love it, but at select locations, Chuck E. Cheese will create a virtual Ticket Blaster experience using the Oculus Rift.