Welcome back to Spatial Beats. This week, we look at Nreal Light’s U.S. expansion, Qualcomm’s Quest 2 estimates, and lots of metaverse startup funding. Let’s jump in…
The highly anticipated Nreal $599 mixed reality glasses are launching in the US on Verizon. My review unit sits beside me, awaiting its 5G sim card.
The makers of TopGolf ProPutt, one of the Quest’s gems, launched Golf+ on the Quest. It’s the best golf simulation I’ve ever played. Frustratingly similar to real golf, but costs way less in time and treasure. Meanwhile, back in the Metaverse, XR start ups are attracting big investors with open wallets.
Ultraleap raises $82M Series D. We had a chance to talk to the founder and CEO, Tom Carter, who describes his company’s unique hand tracking technology as “the layer between the metaverse and human reality.” It’s what everyone that is not Meta (Pico, Varjo, etc.) will use, says 82M dollars.
Social VR Startup HIKKY Raises $57M Investment. Hikky’s Vket Cloud platform is an open metaverse platform where users can host virtual spaces accessible through any web browser on their own domains. The round was led by Japanese telco NTT Docomo.
Qualcomm revealed at an investor event that its Oculus Quest 2 sales were ten million units. They would know. They made the chips that run the thing. Sony hasn’t broken out Playstation numbers in some time. They are likely number two now. Adding in PCVR numbers, there may be more than twenty million 6 DOF consumer VR HMDs in the wild.
Nike teams up with Roblox to create a virtual world called Nikeland. If you’ve ever wondered how brands fit into the metaverse.
The future of immersive VR? ‘Chemical haptics’ applied to your skin. Researchers at the University of Chicago are going a step further by simulating physical sensations using chemicals applied to your skin.
SPREE Location-Based VR Goes Global, Bringing New Tech To Old Attractions. I always wanted to know how VR bumper cars work. You don’t bump, it turns out, you fly.
Battle AR Ghosts In ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife ScARe’. Created by Imprezario Entertainment to promote the upcoming movie, Ghostbusters: Afterlife ScARe is much more than a simple mobile game. It takes advantage of your phone’s camera, haptics, touch screen, LED light, ASMR audio, (headphones highly recommended), and other features to immerse you in a full-body interactive experience that has you physically ducking and dodging incoming slime attacks. And it’s free.
Facebook’s Ridiculous New Ad Reveals Its Vision of the Metaverse. If your goal is to sell people on your vision of the future, you should first be clear on what it is. (Jason Aten/inc.)
This Week in XR is now a podcast hosted by Paramount’s Futurist Ted Schilowitz and Charlie Fink, the author of this weekly column. You can find it on podcasting platforms Spotify, iTunes, and YouTube. Watch the latest episode below.
Charlie Fink is an author and futurist focused on spatial computing. See his books here. Spatial Beats contains insights and inputs from Fink’s collaborators including Paramount Pictures futurist Ted Shilowitz.