virtual reality

Facebook Brings Augmented Reality to Apps

Episode 1383

Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook F8

In a clear sign that they are going after Snapchat, Facebook announced that they are opening up their API to allow app developers access to the camera in the Facebook app. They will also add support for filters, overlays, and other features that are similar to Snapchat, luring users away.

Leo says that Facebook is going after augmented reality in an effort to stay on top of the virtual genre. Leo says that competition is good. It'll be interesting to see how Snapchat and other companies respond.

Augmented Reality May Be Bigger than Virtual Reality

Episode 1382

Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook F8 Conference

Facebook and Oculus had their big confab this week and they're focusing on Augmented Reality, which will bring virtual elements into the real world through a headset that shows you the real world, with virtual elements overlaid on it. Leo says that Facebook is looking to that because they are aware that everyone is getting into VR and they are worried about losing their edge in the genre. So look for Facebook to add AR to Oculus VR. Facebook is also going to add vanishing messages to Instagram in an effort to bury Snapchat since they couldn't buy them.

Microsoft To Defer HoloLens to 2019

Episode 1366

Microsoft Hololens

In the hopes of avoiding a repeat of the mistakes made with rushing a product out to market, Microsoft has announced that development of their mixed reality HoloLens device will be deferred to at least 2019. The hope is that they can avoid any similar mistakes that made the launch of the Kinect camera so problematic. Meanwhile, people can still get the current developer edition for $3500.

Read more at theverge.com.

What's the future of console gaming?

Episode 1356

Kyle from Torrance, CA
PlayStation 4 Pro

Kyle wonders what the future holds for game consoles like the PlayStation. Will there be a new version like a PS5 or will it just keep with incremental improvements like the PlayStation Pro? Leo says that the PS4 has a very powerful processor, and console game systems have a life span of about 10 years before they move to the next platform update. So Leo would imagine we'll see updates during that time, and we hear there will be serious revisions this year. We'll probably see the end of optical media in favor of downloads.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1351

Scott Wilkinson

Scott attended a meeting that indicated that virtual reality is the next great trend in cinematography. It's in its infancy, but cinematographers should start experimenting with shooting in VR by using cheaper cameras like the Ricoh Theta S. Leo says that may be true, but he prefers to be told a story, and told what to look at. When you're looking around, if you think about it, the story teller has failed in telling that story.

Leo does say that Virtual Reality is great for gaming though.

Which virtual reality headset should I buy?

Episode 1351

Rick from Hisperia, CA
PlayStation VR

Rick is wondering which virtual reality headset to buy, or if it would be best to wait until the next generation. Leo says that VR is very convincing and creates an amazing immersive illusion that you're somewhere else. The Oculus Rift has a demo where you're standing on the edge of a skyscraper that's very realistic. There are some shortcomings, however. You can't pick up things and touch things unless you use a game or hand controller. The negative on the Sony Playstation VR is that the move controllers weren't designed with VR, so they can lag a bit.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1345

Dick DeBartolo

This week's gadget is a 2017 CES Innovation Awards Honoree, the MSI VR One wearable gaming computer. It's the world’s thinnest and lightest VR backpack PC. The VR backpack PC weighs only 7.5 lbs. Powered by a unique cooling system to prolong gaming sessions, it comes with swappable batteries, eliminates cables and cords, and is now available to deliver a truly wireless VR experience.