Virtual Perceptions

The Immersive Wire
Weekly analysis of the immersive industry
By Tom Ffiske // 22 July 2020
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Ghost of Tsushima is like living in the Shogun novel, only with a better story and slightly worse characters. 9/10.
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So, how was the world's first AR smartphone launch? Did the OnePlus Nord benefit from a unique unveiling? Or did the experience crumble under its finnicky frame? The result is a mix of both.

The cons started at the beginning. It initially showed several 2D videos in the beginning to outline the presentation. Normally this is fine... except in AR, when the video is tiny and the subtitles even smaller. Showing a narrow frame of a video within a smartphone, while holding it up to watch it all, is not fun. Who wants to see a video within a video? 

But the pros came after. Seeing a model of the phone where I can look all around it, and see all the specs detailed out, is fantastic. A livestream or video doesn't compare to the product visualisation of a model in front of you. 150,000 people viewing a realistic model of a new phone, all at once. That's an amazing benefit and achievement. 

AR launches can work, so long as it cuts to the chase. Anything else is fiddly and sucks any fun from the hype of a global unveiling. When doing new things, it's okay to gut the traditional steps - a video introduction, for example - to really help the person understand a product. 

Funnily enough, Samsung announced that they will do an immersive unveiling event for their events called Life Unstoppable: 'The interactive world will allow guests to explore multiple new product launches in mobile, TV and home appliances from the comfort of their own home.' Intrigued to see how it goes! 
  • The Global HR Summit is starting very soon. Sign up as soon as you can! Oh, and if you are a student, you can see the show for free; just use the code 'EDUCATORSINVR' at the Eventbrite checkout. 
  • VRDays 2020 is looking for speakers. Apply before 31 July to be considered for a spot. 
  • JioGlass is a pair of AR specs from India. They look like some beefy shades, and the company hopes to offer a few immersive services.
  • Pop the champaign! We have some award winners and fund-raisers:
    • Taqtile is the winner of the Mixed Reality 2020 Microsoft Partner of the Year Award for its Manifest platform. 
    • Games for Change awarded the $10,000 grand prize of the VR for Change Alcove Challenge to Labyrinth Lunacy VR.
    • Enduvo raised $4 million in a seed round led by Chicago VC firm MATH Venture Partners.
    • Filmmaker Alex Ruhl has been awarded funding from the BFI to make BAD NEWS, an immersive experience that uses voice-interactivity to allow the audience to drive the story.
  • Augmentor is closing soon. Sign up for the 12-week accelerator programme as soon as you can! 
  • Audience of the Future launched their Immersive Audience Journey Report. This is one of the best guides on immersive tech I have come across, with help from Digital Catapault (including Aki, who I previously interviewed.) Download it today, and have a read - trust me. 
  • One 3DoF enterprise solution remains. The last company standing is Pico, who announced two new VR headsets to its Pico G2 4K line – the G2 4K S and G2 4K Enterprise. 
  • A new Quest model may be coming by the end of this year. All rumours, of course, and who knows what will happen as COVID-19 rears its ugly head... but it's worth a big discussion. 
  • I wrote about the pandemic and VR/AR education. My summary? Hopeful and cynical. 
  • Like the idea of an AR escape room? Same! Check it out. 
  • Want to do an immersive audio experience with a partner? DOUBLE explores the Capgras delusion, a terrifying condition in which the sufferer is convinced that a loved one has been replaced by an exact replica with malign intentions. Creepy, but an amazing idea
  • The IBC Accelerator Challenge is looking for participants. Got some free time, and want to build some awesome stuff? Check out the full details and apply. 
  • Poplar announced the acquisition of AR startup Svrf. The company will integrate tools from Svrf into their own platform including a 3D asset library, 3D asset conversion pipeline, searchable content API, CMS to manage assets and app-based and WebAR prototyping tools.
  • Want to learn some AR marketing in a full course? Brock University may have what you want. 
  • How about holograms while you operate? Washington University developed holograms help physicians during cardiac procedure. Neat
  • The makers of A Fisherman's Tale announced a new gameMaskmaker transports players into a magical mask workshop to meet Prospero, the maskmaker who tasks them to solve the ultimate mystery behind his masks. As they are one of my fav companies, this is amazing news. 
Got some news? Hit me up at 
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  • None of significance. 
If your company has made a significant promotion or hire, please let me know by replying to this email. 

Dan Page of Opposable Group is Creative Director at Bristol VR Lab, a coworking space in England for startups working in XR and surrounding industries. Prior to running the lab he ran VR World Congress, a three day conference and expo that took place in Bristol with 1000+ delegates.

He's been working in VR for six years and is regularly called upon as a commentator and consultant in the space.

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