The XR Week Peek (2024.05.14): New rumors on the Vision Pro 2, Ultraleap Hyperion, and much more!

This is a period with many tech announcements: we had Meta telling about its Horizon OS, yesterday OpenAI unveiled the new GPT-4o, and today Google will hopefully unveil its Android XR operating system. What a time to be alive!

Top news of the week

(Image by Apple)

Apple Vision Pro 2 may come in 2026

The rumors about the Apple Vision Pro 2 continue. According to a recent report, the successor of the first Vision Pro may come in 2026 and have a price comprised between $1500 and $2500. Chinese manufacturers BOE and SeeYA may provide cheaper displays in higher quantities than Sony is doing now, while Samsung may be supplying the DRAM components.
 It seems that most of the rumors are aligning on the launch of an Apple Vision Pro 2 in 2026–2027. This seems a reasonable date to me, even if it should be taken with a grain of salt because the Apple Vision Pro was launching “next year” every year, so these predictions can’t be trusted much.
 Matt Miesnieks said that the rumor aligns with some things he heard. He also said that other OEMs are going to launch headsets with AVP-matching hardware for $1500 this year. This is going to be very interesting…

More info (New rumor about the Apple Vision Pro 2)
More info (Matt Miesnieks comments on the news)

Other relevant news

(Image by Ultraleap)

Ultraleap announces new Hyperion runtime

Hand-tracking company Ultraleap has announced its latest hand-tracking runtime, Hyperion, which substitutes the previous one dubbed Gemini. Apart from being more accurate, Hyperion features some important new features, that the company describes as follows:

  • Microgesture interactions: Hyperion can track small finger movements down to the millimeter, enabling subtle gestures that require minimal effort.
  • Robust to handling objects: Hyperion offers superior hand tracking while holding an object in your hand, making it perfect for mixed reality. For example, while holding a physical prop, such as a welding torch, the hand tracking remains robust.
  • Object tracking: Hyperion allows the Leap Motion Controller 2 camera to track AR Markers (also known as fiducial markers) enabling tracking of any object.
  • Performance switching: Hyperion offers new modes that enable customers to get the best hand-tracking performance for their use case. This includes a low-power mode that enables hand tracking to run with reduced power consumption and a high-performance mode that delivers accurate finger mapping with low latency when computer processing power is unrestricted.
  • Expanded tracking capabilities: Hyperion enables direct access to the Leap Motion Controller 2 stereo IR camera hardware, expanding its use to other computer vision tasks, like depth sensing, 3D scanning, and object tracking.

These features make Hyperion interesting because it becomes a very flexible solution that is fully customizable depending on the client’s needs. I’m particularly intrigued by the mix of direct camera access and object tracking because it means that thanks to Hyperion and the Leap Motion Controller 2, we will be able to interact with real objects while being in mixed reality. I believe there will be many use cases for this.

More info (Hyperion page on the Ultraleap website)
More info (Hyperion announcement blog post)

A new technology for AR glasses has been invented at Stanford

A research team at Stanford’s Computational Imaging Lab has developed a new AI-assisted holographic imaging technology that is thinner, lighter, and higher quality than most AR technologies out there. Thanks to this new imaging technology, which is made by a stack of holographic elements, the user is able to see a very high-quality representation of virtual elements, that also have real depth (like in lightfields). All of this would also fit inside the frames of standard glasses.
 This technology is still at a prototype stage, and in fact, its field of view is just a ridiculous 11.7 degrees. But it is thanks to research projects like this that in the next years, we will arrive at having AR glasses we can wear every day.

More info

Meta may be less inclined to do data mining for VR ads than we thought

On X, a user said that Meta sells its headsets at a loss “to data mine the ecosystem for ad revenue profit”, which honestly speaking is something many of us think, given the current business model of social media. But surprisingly, John Carmack, who is usually very frank with the community, answered that this may not be exactly the case:
 Data mining the VR ecosystem for ad revenue wasn’t even on the radar at Meta while I was there. You have a mistaken model of the strategic motivations. Improved ad targeting based on VR data would primarily benefit VR developers, but you would be surprised how reticent Meta is to export new data for advertising decisions due to privacy tensions.
 I find two tidbits very interesting: the first one is that all the pressures that Meta is receiving about privacy management are having some effect, and the company is more cautious about handling people’s personal data than it used to be. The second is that “mistaken model of the strategic motivations”, which seems to aim at the fact that Meta has a clear strategy that is not (only) about data mining this time. If I had to bet 1 euro, I would say that Meta aims at a business model based on user-generated content, like Roblox. If everyone in the metaverse uses Horizon OS, all content will be generated and sold on Horizon OS, and Meta can take a 30% cut on all the transactions happening in the metaverse.

More info

News worth a mention

(Image by Holoride)

Holoride files for insolvency

Holoride, the company offering innovative VR entertainment for the automotive sector, has filed for insolvency after the lead investor of its upcoming round changed his mind at the last minute. The company is now trying to find a solution by the end of June to guarantee its continued existence, with a strategic repositioning. Go, Holoride team!

More info

Neurable raised $13M to integrate BCIs into everyday products

The Brain-Computer-Interface startup Neurable has just raised $13M to continue refining its non-invasive BCI technology and integrate it into everyday products. It’s interesting to see that Neurable is still around and kicking: a few years ago there was a bit of hype around it when it created an EEG-based “mind controller” for the HTC Vive. I wonder if VR remains one of its most important use cases.

More info

SenseGlove introduces Nova 2 gloves

SenseGlove’s Nova 2 gloves offer various improvements over the previous model and their biggest innovation is the introduction of the palm pressure feedback. Having haptic sensation on the palm is very important to increase the sense of presence when you are holding a tool in your hand. The price of this device is $6000 and it is of course aimed at the enterprise sector.

More info

Teleporting with gaze on the Vision Pro

WebXR experience The Escape Artist is being ported to the Vision Pro and the developer is experimenting with a very original and intriguing locomotion mechanic. Instead of the classical teleporting arc, the idea is to use gaze-and-pinch as with many of the other interactions on the AVP. So the user can look at where he wants to go, and then he can pinch to teleport there. From the videos, it looks wonderful.

More info

Discover New Images festival

On Upload VR, you can find a report about the New Images Festival and the most important VR experiences that were showcased there. One of them was “In pursuit of repetitive beats” which is a nostalgic exploration of the UK’s acid-house movement and ’80s rave scene

More info (New Images Festival)
More info (In pursuit of repetitive beats)

Some news about content

  • Five Nights at Freddy’s: Help Wanted 2 is now available on the Quest Store for $40
  • Blade And Sorcery is close to releasing the update that will bring it to version 1.0
  • Spin Rhythm XD, the kinetic rhythm-action game mixing Bop It and Guitar hero, is coming to PSVR 2 on July, 9th
  • Marvel Studios and ILM Immersive announced a new interactive story coming exclusively to Apple Vision Pro based on the popular Disney+ animated series What If…?.
  • Niantic released on App Lab a demo of a mixed reality virtual pet (a Peridot) called “Hello, Dot”
  • Runaways is a spatial endless runner designed specifically for Apple Vision Pro, to be released on May, 27
  • Beat Saber is now available as cross-buy between Quest and Rift
  • ‘Batman: Arkham Shadow’ trailer has been massively downvoted for being a VR game exclusive to Quest 3
  • Upload has written its usual “In Case You Missed it” post, with many pieces of minor VR news

More info (FNAF 2)
More info (Blade And Sorcery)
More info (Spin Rhythm XD)
More info (What if…?)
More info (Hello, Dot)
More info (Runaways)
More info (Beat Saber)
More info (Batman: Arkham Shadow)
More info (ICYMI)

Some reviews about content

  • I’ve gone hands-on with Hello Dot from Niantic. This little peridot in my house was very cute, but unluckily the experience is still in very early stages so there are not many possible interactions
  • Underworld Overseer is a game inspired by Dungeon Keeper. Upload tried a preliminary version of it and found it very promising, thanks to its good-looking graphics and entertaining gameplay
  • I’ve tried the demo of COLD VR and I loved the gameplay of this game where time moves slowly only if you keep moving, even if I think that it still needs a bit of polish before the final release

More info (Hello Dot)
More info (Underworld Overseer)
More info (COLD VR)

Other news

It is now possible to comment again on Upload VR for free!

Learn more

It seems that the case of an Apple Vision Pro saved the device from being destroyed by a car

Learn more

Road To VR explains to us how XR headsets are currently used in the automotive industry

Learn more

New studies show how VR is effective in treating depression like traditional means but with more engagement

Learn more

NVIDIA’s Latte 3D can generate 3D models in a few seconds

Learn more

Someone managed to use Gaussian Splatting to stream volumetric videos in Unreal Engine 5

Learn more

Good journalism still exists. Someone on Engadget wrote an article saying that it is normal that Apple is not selling millions of Vision Pros

Learn more

OpenAI announced GPT-4o, a new multimodal AI that works with text, audio, images, and videos

Learn more (Announcement livestream)
Learn more (Announcement blog post)

News from partners (and friends)

Get a VR indie game

I have no specific partner to support this week, so please support a VR indie developer! Head to SideQuest and try to download an indie game from there and if you liked it, share a social media post about it. The whole indie VR community will appreciate that.
Go to SideQuest

Sponsored Area

Do you need a virtual world?

For the last four years, I have been part of a team building social VR experiences like concerts and exhibitions which won a few awards. In case you are in need of a solid team able to build a high-quality XR virtual environment, please let me know. I’m pretty sure we can help you and deliver a great result!
Contact me

Some XR fun

Sometimes VR applications have unexpected consequences…
Funny link

What if AI companies had honest commercials?
Funny link

Donate for good

Like last week, also this week in this final paragraph I won’t ask you to donate to my blog, but to the poor people who are facing the consequences of the war. Please donate to the Red Cross to handle the current humanitarian situation in Ukraine. I will leave you the link to do that below.
 Let me take a moment before to thank anyway all my Patreon donors for the support they give to me:

  • Alex Gonzalez VR
  • DeoVR
  • GenVR
  • Eduardo Siman
  • Jonn Fredericks
  • Jean-Marc Duyckaerts
  • Reynaldo T Zabala
  • Richard Penny
  • Terry xR. Schussler
  • Ilias Kapouranis
  • Paolo Leoncini
  • Nikk Mitchell and the great FXG team
  • Jake Rubin
  • Alexis Huille
  • Raghu Bathina
  • Chris Koomen
  • Cognitive3D
  • Wisear (Yacine Achiakh)
  • Masterpiece X
  • Dimo Pepelyashev
  • Jennifer Granger
  • Jason Moore
  • Steve Biggs
  • Julio Cesar Bolivar
  • Jan Schroeder
  • Kai Curtis
  • Francesco Strada
  • Sikaar Keita
  • Ramin Assadollahi
  • Juan Sotelo
  • Andrew Sheldon
  • Chris Madsen
  • Horacio Torrendell
  • Andrew Deutsch
  • Fabien Benetou
  • Tatiana Kartashova
  • Marco “BeyondTheCastle” Arena
  • Eloi Gerard
  • Adam Boyd
  • Jeremy Dalton
  • Joel Ward
  • Alex P
  • Lynn Eades
  • Donald P
  • Casie Lane
  • Catherine Henry
  • Qcreator
  • Ristband (Anne McKinnon & Roman Rappak)
  • Stephen Robnett
  • KaihatsuJai
  • Christopher Boyd
  • Carol Dalrymple
  • Sb
  • Pieter Siekerman
  • Enrico Poli
  • Vooiage Technologies
  • Caroline
  • Liam James O’Malley
  • Hillary Charnas
  • Wil Stevens
  • Brian Peiris
  • Francesco Salizzoni
  • Alan Smithson
  • Steve R
  • Brentwahn
  • Matt Cool
  • Simplex
  • Gregory F Gorsuch
  • Matias Nassi

And now here you are the link to donate:

Support The Red Cross in Ukraine

(Header image by Ultraleap)

The post The XR Week Peek (2024.05.14): New rumors on the Vision Pro 2, Ultraleap Hyperion, and much more! appeared first on The Ghost Howls.

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