It's a full-time job keeping up with VR news, so let us take the burden off you! Tech-talk is a curated list of articles around exciting new tech in the VR space. Designed to help you easily keep abreast of all the VR news.
1. THE METAVERSE
When people ask us about the future of VR, I like to describe the 'Metaverse' to them - a universal web-based platform for all VR content. A world where you can freely browse all VR experiences without having to take-off your headset. 'Okay Google, I want to go on safari in Kenya', or 'Alexa, what's happening in Time Square right now', or perhaps, 'Take me to Glastonbury, stage 4'. I like to think of this as 'Matrix-Style' VR and it's coming. Maybe not this year but that's where we're headed.
The initial stages are very much underway. WebVR may sound about as exciting as a night out with a health-and-safety expert but it is opening up the possibility for the Metaverse. At present, browsing VR content is restricted to the various ecosystems (Oculus, Viveport, etc.), specific to each headset. To watch the content, you have to download an app, which is time-consuming and data-heavy. With WebVR, sites will soon be able to host VR content, so instead of having to enter an ecosystem and download an app, you could simply click on a link, put your headset on and watch the content straight away. This has previously been an issue as the quality has not been good enough. Internet browsers traditionally render at the same rate as a monitor but to play VR, they need a much higher frame-rate (around 90fps). As more internet browsers (like Mozilla, or the new VR tailored Carmel) are now adapting to offer this, WebVR is becoming a real possibility.
At first, this will simply make browsing and watching VR content much easier but it is also paving the way for the metaverse... which is coming!
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2. VR HEADSETS AS STANDARD
So although Google patents are a dime-a-dozen, they can be a good indicator as to where the tech giant sees the future heading - and recently there has been a trend towards mass VR hardware adoption models, which I think is quite interesting. Advertisers are always, quite understandably, hungry to know how ubiquitous the VR headset is, or is likely to become. You don't have to spend much time looking to find all the big predictions of how hundreds of millions of headsets will be sold over the next five years or so. But how will that come about?
If a recent Google patent is to be believed, VR headsets could come as standard, with every new phone as part of the packaging. It's unclear exactly what the headset will look like -probably somewhere between the cardboard and daydream- but if this model is to replicated by other mobile phone manufacturers, it's easier to see how everyone will (fairly) soon have a VR headset available to them.
I think this, along with the standardisation of headsets with phones (so you can use any phone in any headset), is going to open everything up massively and will lead to VR headsets becoming commonplace.
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