Oculus Rift vs. Project Morpheus: Comparing the hot VR headsets
Aug12

Oculus Rift vs. Project Morpheus: Comparing the hot VR headsets

Remember in the ’90s when virtual reality was supposed to be the gaming of the future? Sega had the VR headset and Nintendo came out with the Virtual boy. Then the unexpected happened: The promise of virtual reality crashed and burned. People hated the clunky tech and crappy graphics. Fast forward to 2015, and we are now sitting on the precipice of a VR throwdown between Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus — two of the best gaming headsets of the foreseeable future. We scoured the internet to find as much data as we could on both of these devices, and here’s what we found. Oculus Rift vs. Project Morpheus Design It would seem that the early demise of VR was brought about through the implementation of clunky headwear, but Oculus and Sony have managed to avoid that. Both Oculus’ Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus boast ergonomic headsets that put comfortability first. Oculus uses a series of straps that are adjustable for each unique user. The company describes the process as similar to putting on a baseball hat. Sony recently redesigned Project Morpheus to only use a single strap with a quick release button, which would be wonderful considering that some people get sick from playing too long. But Oculus one-ups Sony by incorporating an adjuster for the lens on the bottom right side of the headset. Display Both of these products cram so much amazing visual technology into their displays that it could be difficult to decide which one you want. If you want clarity and stunning visuals, then the Rift might be what you’ll consider the best headset for gaming. With final specs putting the resolution at 2160 x 1200, the Oculus Rift uses two OLED lights to produce one image working with 233 million pixels per second. It also packs two AMOLED displays with low-persistence technology. The technology enables incredible visual clarity as you explore virtual worlds with the Rift. Finally, the Oculus Rift has a 100 degree display field, which outperforms the 90 degree display field of Project Morpheus. But what if, for you, clarity isn’t the most important aspect of virtual reality? Recent stats seem to show that Project Morpheus creates a more immersive experience. Morpheus features a 1080p resolution and uses OLED lighting. More importantly, the Sony headset uses LED tracking on all sides of the device. The new prototype has nine tracking LEDS, which is three more than the previous model. This kind of technology would allow you the game to encompass you completely, not just in the 100 degree field for the Oculus Rift. Hardware If you don’t already own a high-end PC, you may want to seriously consider the Sony VR headset. The Oculus Rift...

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The best augmented reality and virtual reality headsets for everyone, from developers to latecomers
Aug11

The best augmented reality and virtual reality headsets for everyone, from developers to latecomers

Whether you’re an avid gamer who pre-orders the latest releases months before they hit shelves, or a Baby Boomer who’s still spellbound by the original View-Master, there’s an augmented reality or virtual reality headset just waiting to embrace your face. The following is a condensed guide to all virtual reality devices currently on or entering the market, grouped according to the technological adoption curve. We’ve found the right devices for everyone, from the eager “early adopters” to the reticent “laggards.” And let us assure you, since you’re reading this article on the internet, you have what it takes to enjoy at least one of these VR headsets. The best virtual reality headsets for innovators Oculus Rift DK2 The Oculus Rift Development Kit 2 is a high-powered headset equipped with out-of-the-box engine integrations for the Unreal Development Kit, Unreal Engine 4, and Unity 4. In addition to the OLED display, the Oculus DK2 utilizes real-time microsecond precision measurement of motion-to-photon latency to eliminate simulator sickness and accurately track real-world head movements. The Oculus SDK supports Windows, Mac OS X and Linux, and can be pre-ordered for $350. HTC Vive Developer Edition The HTC Vive Developer Edition combines the HTC Vive headset and Valve’s Steam VR base stations to create a fully-immersive VR experience where users can walk around their room as if they were in whatever game they’re playing. And since it’s a developer edition, gamers will get all kinds of SDKs to test and build their own applications. Although there’s no word on price just yet, you can bet it will be at least as much as the DK2. Fove VR Fove’s biggest differentiator is their eye-tracking sensors, which allow users to interact with their virtual environment through their eyeballs, rather than a handheld controller like most of their competitors. Fove’s SDK also integrates content from Unity, Unreal Engine, and Cryengine, allowing users to port their existing VR content into their ecosystem and make incredible games. Once Fove’s Kickstarter is complete, the headset is projected to retail for somewhere between $400 and $500. Razer OSVR The Razer OSVR headset is strikingly similar to the DK2 in appearance, but what really sets it apart is the Open-Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) ecosystem, “a new standard in VR gaming to push the VR gaming experience forward,” according to their website. Although the hardware behind the Hacker Dev Kit headset is expected to ship sometime in 2016 for $199, the SDKs are now available for developers to start tinkering with on current devices. The best virtual reality headsets for early adopters Oculus Rift The Oculus Rift is like the Arcade Fire of VR headsets — it gained mainstream notoriety...

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Oculus acquires Pebbles Interface for potential controller free gaming
Jul17

Oculus acquires Pebbles Interface for potential controller free gaming

Virtual Reality company Oculus has acquired tech company Pebbles Interface for a reported $60 million. Both tech companies made the announcement earlier this week as Oculus becomes more vocal over the future of VR. Israel-based startup Pebbles Interface specializes in developing advanced motion sensors that recreate physical objects in VR. According to a blog post by Oculus, Pebbles Interface technology uses micro-optics and computer vision to improve the information that can be extracted from optical sensors. The Pebbles Interface website has been taken down and replaced by comment by CTO of Pebbles Interfaces, Nadav Grossinger. “We’ve always believed visual computing will be the next major platform in our lifetime, and we’re excited to join the Oculus team to achieve that vision for the future,” he wrote. The startup company received $45,000 in 2011 from initial seeding funding by iNetworks, but by 2013 it had raised over $11 million in funding from major tech companies like SanDisk. Going down the rabbit hole of acquisition by Oculus can help show consumers the type of VR that the company aims to create. Oculus acquired Carbon Design in 2014, the company that designed the Xbox controller, a gaming engine two weeks later, two VR companies in December 2014, and Surreal Engine, a computer vision startup, in May. Oculus was bought by Facebook in 2014 for $2 billion and the company has been using that money to become the leader in VR technology. Based on the tech companies that Oculus have acquired, it would be reasonable to conclude that they are planning to introduce a controllerless experience. The release of the Oculus Touch, a sensor-based dual controller for the Rift, will be coming out in the second half of 2016. Presumably, any kind of controller update for the Rift won’t be released until after this launch. Those dreamers that want a controller-free VR may have to wait till the first part of...

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Oculus leaks images of consumer Oculus Rift prior to press conference
Jun10

Oculus leaks images of consumer Oculus Rift prior to press conference

Oculus VR accidentally released images of the Oculus Rift consumer headset on Tuesday. Considering the company is announcing the details of the device at a much-anticipated press conference on Thursday, however, the leak seems more like a well-timed PR stunt as opposed to an honest mistake. And if the appearance of the renderings was indeed a mistake, the interested drummed up across the internet sure was a great byproduct. The images appeared when the company unveiled its new website earlier this week. Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey took to Reddit to explain the snafoo. “This is an old placeholder concept image that we accidentally leaked,” he wrote. “Everything in it is ancient, certainly nowhere close to final (as evidenced by the GPU specs and the game named ‘war’). Enjoy checking it out, at this point, but don’t expect everything to carry through to the stream on the 11th.” On the pre-order page, an image suggests that the Rift headset, the Rift tracker, the Simple Input Device (SID), a game pad, and cables will arrive to consumers in a sleek, minimal black box. The SID could be a solution for navigating menus and selecting content, or it could be a motion control device akin to a Nintendo’s Wii remote or HTC Vive’s want controller. Overall, the design of the headset is far more sleek and compact than previously seen, so those waiting to order whatever is revealed on on June 11th will surely not be disappointed. Pricing is as of yet undetermined but is anticipated to come in around $1,500 for the total package. As previously reported, the Oculus Rift consumer version is to be shipped in the first quarter of 2016. Keep tabs on Oculus’ website for the conference countdown, and we’ll be sure to keep you...

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