Dacuda & Mindmaze to create Mobile Room Scale VR solution
When I first heard about Dacuda and their inside out head tracking for mobile they were days away from launching a Kickstarter to fund its development. Based in Zurich, Switzerland Dacuda is a computer vision company using SLAM to provide full head tracking to mobile VR without the need for external hardware like the Oculus rift or HTC VIVE use. (SLAM stands for “Simultaneous Localization And Mapping” and is a computer technology that creates a 3D map of an environment while simultaneously keeping track your location within it.)
But of course things change fast in the VR industry and few days later the Kickstarter was off the table and they had signed with Zurich based Mindmaze, a neurotechnology company at the intersection of neuroscience, virtual reality and augmented reality. The companies have teamed up to launch a phone-based VR headset featuring 6 degree of freedom room-scale tracking and emotion measurement capabilities for social VR, at the price point of a Samsung GearVR.
“We will empower adoption of VR into the hands of the everyday user with capabilities matching premium tethered headsets at a fraction of the cost”, said Dr. Alexander Ilic, founder and CTO of Dacuda, “Room-Scale VR becomes instantly usable anywhere and affordable for everyone”.
“To redefine high quality consumer VR and AR experiences beyond media and gaming into healthcare and wellness has been a long standing interest for MindMaze and with the MMI platform we intend to usher a new era of neural VR technologies accessible to millions of consumers” says Dr. Tej Tadi, founder and CEO of MindMaze.
I asked Dacuda what they thought of Oculus’ preview of their mobile room scale headset “Santa Cruz” at OC3 and if this affected their direction at all. Team member Vicky Su responded, “We are excited to hear Oculus’ stance on Inside-Out tracking. It validates the space of inside-out tracking for us. Oculus appears to be taking a dedicated hardware approach, as such we are very complimentary to what they are working on. In that 3 headset graphic (GearVR, New Headset, Rift) we are bringing inside-out tracking room-scale VR to the GearVR style Slot-In Headsets. This is something we can do today and have shown at numerous public demos.”