Top 5 Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality News 💥 💥 💥
Google makes music, more Daydream-ready phones, using augmented reality to solve crimes, headset sales projections update, prepping human head transplant for reality w/ VR, meet your unborn child w/ VR, funding wrapup, and more…
Special thanks to featured guest Jesse Damiani of VRScout
1) GOOGLE DAYDREAM MAKES MUSIC AND TWO NEW PHONES ARE READY
Good, a media company focused on social impact, is teaming up with Google for a live music concert series and promoting Google’s first Daydream-ready phone, the Pixel. In addition to an extensive live stream campaign surrounding the 5-city tour featuring acts like Glass Animals and Gogol Bordello, a 360 video experience will be created and distributed on (yep, you guessed it) the Google Daydream content platform. As a related sidenote, two new phones boast the spec requirements to run Daydream: the Moto Z and Moto Z Force from Lenovo (in a somewhat ironic twist, Lenovo actually bought the the Motorola Mobility brand from Google in 2014).
2) ON THE SCENE OF THE CRIME WITH AUGMENTED REALITY
Crime scenes are easily contaminated, which is a huge issue in the evidentiary process. The Dutch police force, the Netherlands Forensic Institute, and the Dutch Fire Brigade are using AR to eliminate the accidental alteration of important evidence. Using body cameras and headsets, a local responding officer can consult with experts who guide the officers via audio communication or a heads-up display — and the most qualified experts can advise, regardless of their real-world location. The complete system will reportedly be available in 6 months — and don’t worry, it will not be used to make arrests… at least not yet.
3) INFLATED SALES PROJECTIONS OF HEADSETS ARE REVISED
Interactive media research company SuperData is backpedaling on the overeager VR headset sales projections they released recently. The slashed projections’ biggest loser is Sony’s PlayStation VR, with unit sales predictions downgraded from 2.6M to 750K. As the PSVR requires a PS4 or the PS Pro (and plays better on the Pro, which runs 4K), Sony is choosing to push consumers towards buying their recently-released Pro console. With a notable absence of holiday deal incentives, Sony’s message to consumers is clear: get the Pro now, then the PSVR later. The sales predictions for Google Daydream were also reduced to 260K from 450K — probably because the Daydream-ready phone club is so tiny.
4) YOU’RE JUST GOING TO HAVE TO READ THESE
The two most… let’s call them “unexpected” stories this week: virtual reality is preparing the world’s first human head transplant for his post-surgery reality, and now expecting parents can meet their future child via an Oculus Rift headset thanks to 3D models from ultrasound and MRI. You’re welcome.
Related Stocks: Facebook, Inc. ($FB)
5) FUNDING WRAPUP:
GEOCV RAISES $700K TO CAPTURE APARTMENTS IN 3D: New York, NY, based company GeoCV has raised $700K to continue progress on bringing its mobile-based 3D scanning application to the real estate market. The app is intended for the new-generation smartphones and tablets with 3D cameras like Intel RealSense and Google Project Tango. With volumetric 3D capture and a cloud processor for creating 3D models (integrated with SketchFab and viewable in Google Cardboard or other VR systems), GeoCV’s product will be launched some time in 2017.
21ST CENTURY FOX LEADS $58M SERIES A ROUND FOR ODG’S SMARTGLASSES : Focusing on the military and enterprise spaces since 1999, Osterhaut Design Group has raised their Series A with $58M in venture capital. Led by 21st Century Fox, which had acquired a minority stake in the company back in January of this year, this round also saw participation from Vanfund Urban Investment, Shenzhen O-film Tech and others. Expect to see major dazzle from the company at the upcoming CES in Las Vegas in January — ODG has the proven technology, and we should hopefully see some interactive entertainment experiences with 21st Century Fox’s considerable list of intellectual properties.
Malia Probst is Director of Brand Development for VRScout, one of the world’s leading immersive media companies, and co-founder of Reality Inspired, which connects brands with mixed reality technology for marketing and sales tools. Also check out her interviews with leaders in the virtual reality and augmented reality industry on the Real Virtual Show podcast.