January 12, 2024
Didn’t make it to Vegas? We’ve sifted through the AI companion robots and smart kitchen appliances to bring you the top enterprise-related XR/spatial computing announcements and products from CES 2024:
The electronics giant announced a standalone mixed reality headset focused on “spatial content creation.” Developed with Siemens, the headset uses Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon XR2+ Gen 2 chipset (newer than the one in Quest 3) and boasts 4K resolution per eye, dual OLED microdisplays, a flip-down visor, and unique controllers in the form of a stylus/pointer and a ring.
Sony made no mention of gaming; instead it’s targeting content creators, engineers, and other professionals in potential competition with Apple Vision Pro. Users can edit and shape 3D models while wearing the headset, creating a new way to model and explore 3D designs as well as create immersive training environments. The headset is slated for release later this year and will use Siemens’ Xcelerator software tools for enterprise.
HTC launched a $200 Full Face Tracker accessory that attaches magnetically to the Vive XR Elite headset to capture eye and mouth movements. Developers can use the eye and mouth tracking capabilities for a number of purposes including animating avatar faces more realistically and social VR apps.
Face tracking also enables foveated rendering, automatic IPD adjustment, and a better understanding of user intent.
Xreal unveiled the $699 Xreal Air 2 Ultra AR glasses with a novel titanium frame and new “3D environment sensors” permitting true AR content and gesture control (hand tracking). The Samsung-tethered glasses use positional tracking and computer vision to place virtual objects into your real environment (as opposed to basic floating overlays) and are meant primarily for developers.
Xreal also showcased partnerships with five companies to expand the use of its AR glasses: The company’s collaboration with BMW focuses on introducing AR glasses to the driving experience, while Forma Vision is using Xreal’s glasses for holographic meetings.
Xreal and Qualcomm announced a multiyear collaboration aimed at integrating AR, AI, and 5G.
Qualcomm revealed the on-device AI capabilities of the Snapdragon XR2+ Gen 2 chip for XR headsets, which offers 4.3K resolution per eye at 90 frames per second, support for 12 or more concurrent tracking cameras, and more. Enterprise use cases featuring “room-scale screens, life-size overlays, and virtual desktops” were mentioned. More than five OEMs are working on devices powered by the new chipset, including Google and Samsung.
Nvidia has entered into partnerships with BITONE, Configit, Katana Studio, ZeroLight, and others to expand the use of its Omniverse platform in the automotive industry. In particular, Nvidia is promoting the use of digital twins and the benefits of a unified asset pipeline for both marketing and back-end processes.
Basically, the digital twins you use to streamline workflows can also be used as interactive sales tools in lieu of traditional auto configurators. Learn more.
- Vuzix unveiled the safety glasses-certified Vuzix Z100 smart glasses, “indistinguishable from a pair of standard glasses.” Thanks to AI, the glasses will provide situational guidance to streamline workflows and can augment the data feed from finger scanners, sensors, and other devices.
- Zappar/Zapbox introduced mixed reality experiences including spatial video integration and the Open Brush app. Spatial video allows Apple users to record and view 3D videos through Zapbox’s low-cost headset, while Open Brush enables creation and manipulation of 3D models.
- Aromajoin unveiled scent wearables for XR including the neck-worn Aroma Shooter Wearable that synchronously releases scents corresponding to what’s going on in the virtual environment.
- Haptic technology startup Microtube Tech showcased the “first untethered pneumatic” XR haptic glove allowing users to “feel” raindrops, “differentiate whether an object is hard or soft,” and “manipulate digital orbs.” Simulations for pilots are reportedly available.