Welcome back to this week’s news roundup, where we feature the biggest and most interesting news stories in VR, AR, and voice assistants from the past week. This week we saw Qualcomm releasing details about Google’s Daydream headsets, a VR pop idol band, and more.
Google exploring monetization within Daydream
Google know ads perhaps better than anyone, and now that their Daydream platform is picking up steam they’ve been looking at how to best add monetization to it in the form of floating “ad cubes”, that when gazed at load a short advertising video clip.
Apple reportedly acquires a German eye tracking firm on the quiet
While the WWDC of this year focused mainly on Apple’s upcoming AR platform, reports state that the tech giant acquired the company SensoMotoric Instruments earlier last month. The German-based firm develops a range of eye tracking hardware and software, and an acquisition by Apple could be pointing towards a focus on in-house VR in the near future.
Source: Mac Rumors
More HTC Vive and Lenovo Google Daydream standalone headset details revealed
It has become clear that both standalone headsets are based on Qualcomm’s VR headset reference design, including its Snapdragon VR hardware. The headsets of both companies are also said to contain almost identical inner specs, with only a differentiation in outer aesthetics.
Source: Road to VR
VRotica – the first standalone VR headset exclusively for watching pornography
In a world first, U.K.-based startup Hologram have released a standalone VR headset that can only be used for pornography. The company stated that in the near future they’re looking to expand to adult games and live streaming, “without any of the many distractions found on other systems.”
Developer response to Apple’s ARKit has been overwhelmingly positive
In a recent interview, Apple vice-president of product marketing Greg Joswiak has remarked that the amount of enthusiasm towards their ARKit platform has been “unbelievable,” and also gave comments as to Apple’s choice to stick with their iPhone and iPad software as opposed to developing standalone headsets.
‘Hop Step Sing!’ – Japan’s first VR pop idol group still going strong
Japan is famous for its idols – real or virtual – so it was only a matter of time before they created their own VR pop band. The anime-styled trio have already begun to release a handful of songs, which can be viewed in VR via the Steam gaming platform.
The iOS 11 beta hides a very cool VR feature
A VR feature has been added to Apple Maps in the company’s newest OS release, where users can fly over 3D maps by physically walking around. The feature makes use of the iPhone’s positional tracking sensors, and makes you feel like a giant strolling through city streets worldwide.
Source: VR Scout
YouTube reinforce their position on VR with the announcement of their VR Creator Lab
Housed within their YouTube Spaces Los Angeles offices, the new three-day program offers training and equipment for YouTubers looking to work on their 360 VR recording and editing skills, with ongoing mentoring and issued projects.
VR enters the financial sphere with US processor Payscout
Announced at the recent Money 20/20 panel, the company’s app is integrated with Visa Checkout and allows users to explore products from 360 degrees and make purchases without even having to take off their VR headset.
Mobile VR and AR developers may be gradually moving to higher-end computer-based systems
The UBM Game Network surveyed 600 VR, AR, and MR professionals on the platforms they’re developing for – 56% replied for the HTC Vive and 49% for the Rift, compared to 24% for Google’s VR platforms and 33% for the Samsung Gear VR.
Source: Media Post
Catch up on our previous news summaries here.