This isn't like any other week of Field of View, our weekly feature looking at all the other stories in the world of virtual and augmented reality. No no, this was the week of CES 2018, and with it came some big news.
The biggest news was that the HTC Vive is getting a 3K upgrade in the form of the HTC Vive Pro, which we got to try. Oculus and Xiaomi are also teaming up on the worldwide launch of the Oculus Go, and they're even partnering up on a new standalone headset for China called the Mi VR Standalone. Then there's the first Daydream standalone headset, the Lenovo Mirage Solo.
Read this: The best PSVR games
We also learned about Merge's latest VR product, the 6DoF Blaster, which gives you VR without a headset, and the Vuzix Blade, which don't look too far away from a normal pair of sunglasses. Then we got to try out Cinego's personal movie theater, Samsung's vision improving smartglasses and Black Box's VR gym.
That's not all that happened, of course, so read on for rest of the stories from this week of absolute craziness.
Read this: News blips and tidbits
PlayStation VR getting 130 games in 2018
Everyone is always oohing and awe-ing about HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, but PlayStation VR is the champion of the high-end mainstream virtual reality headsets (at least in the sales).
This has given Sony big confidence in the platform, and it's told Nikkei that it promises 130 VR titles by the end of 2018. That's a lot of content, and if that fuels even more people to purchase PSVR, Sony may have the best place to play in virtual reality for a good while.
Blade Runner: Revelations built specifically for Daydream
This week we saw the announcement of the Lenovo Mirage Solo, the first standalone Google Daydream headset, which uses a technology called WorldSense to track your head without external sensors.
Blade Runner: Revelations is the first game build specifically for that technology, letting future Mirage Solo owners move their head around and experience the world of Blade Runner without the need of external headsets. A true standalone VR experience, even if it's a little too short.
Dell goes big on VR
Dell's Mixed Reality Visor is one of the most comfortable headsets we've worn, so it's heartening to see the company is taking a further step into the world of VR. First, its Alienware brand is collaborating with Oculus and NVIDIA to create a new competitive VR eSports category.
Then, the company announced a new $799 VR-ready Inspiron Gaming Desktop in an effort to reduce the barrier of entry to high-end VR gaming. It features 8th generation Intel Core processors with up to six cores. No word on the graphics card yet.
Finally, Dell will also begin selling the consumer version of HTC Vive to customers. Not only that, it's going to start selling the Meta AR headset, too.
Floyd Mayweather's VR experience coming to his gyms
Floyd Mayweather is opening a line of gyms modeled after his own fitness routines, and one of the standout features is going to be a virtual reality experience called Mayweather Boxing + Fitness VR. The first gym opens in Los Angeles at the end of January.
The experience will act as a supplement to coaching you can get at the gyms themselves. They include 12-week programs that'll feature a variety of exercise each week, with each progressive week getting more difficult. The headset and controllers will track speed, punch intensity and calories burned. You'll even be trained by a virtual Mayweather, who will also be in your corner as you take on competition in VR boxing intended to give you a full-body, cardio based workout.
NextVR looking to improve live events
NextVR specializes in recording concerts, sports, and other live events for viewing in virtual reality. During CES 2018, the company announced that it was adding a new technology to its recording methods: 6DoF.
This basically means users will get even more freedom of movement while watching a live event in VR. You won't just be able to look around at a 360 video, the video will adjust based on where you move to keep you in the scene. So if you crouch or move forward or tilt your head, the video will adjust to match your perception, making you feel like you're actually there.
ARSENZ's thermal AR glasses
Flir Systems has announced the Thermal by Flir program, which is designed for tech partners who use the company's thermal imaging sensors. One of those partners is ARSENZ, who has designed to use the sensor for its AR ThermoGlass. It basically lets the wearer see a thermal image, which is good for firefighters or power line operators who may need to exclusively look for objects with high heat signatures.
Luci's entertainment glasses
It turns out one of the trends for 2018 are virtual reality glasses repurposed and focused on giving people extraordinary entertainment experiences. We've already seen the Cinego, but now say hello to Luci, which has unveiled its immers headset.
Only 185g, the glasses look like a chunky pair of sunglasses. They're aimed at bringing Ultra HD cinematic experiences directly to your eyeballs, and feature 3,000+ pixels per inch. It can even do 3D video at 4K, if you're so inclined. They start production in Q2 2018.
Play this: Phantom Lost
This virtual reality music experience is a collaboration between Finnish band Phantom and motion designer ZEBRACOLOR. You can either conduct the visuals yourself, trying to match the music, or you can let the music be in charge and just let the entire experience wash over you.
Watch this: New York Times' Reuniting Boats
Hurricanes Irma and Maria displayed many boats in the Virgin Islands, leaving people without some of their only method of transportation. The New York Times recorded the US Coast Guard's effort in recovering these lost boats.
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