Mozilla Launches First of its Kind Native VR Web Experience

This past year, Mozilla announced plans to develop a website that could support virtual reality. In June, it released an update with an experimental design for Firefox and the Oculus Rift. And earlier this week, to help celebrate Firefox’s 10th anniversary, Mozilla launched MozVR.com, a site featuring virtual demos, website blueprints, source code and guided tutorials to propel the growth of VR online. For now, the experience is only possible with the support of Firefox’s VR-enabled feature and an Oculus Rift headset. Continue reading Mozilla Launches First of its Kind Native VR Web Experience

Taylor Swift Music Video Offers a New Take on Virtual Reality

Pop star Taylor Swift’s new music video “Blank Spaces” comes with an app that offers fans an interactive experience in the video’s pristine mansion setting. The app is available for iOS and Android, and it gives viewers a chance to explore the scenes featured in the music video, see Swift dance just a few feet away, and discover Easter eggs with extras such as Polaroids. This app may point to the future of music videos, and could provide an ideal testing ground for virtual environments. Continue reading Taylor Swift Music Video Offers a New Take on Virtual Reality

Technicolor Imagines the Future at Research & Innovation Lab

Technicolor’s Rennes Research & Innovation Lab is a 193,750-square-foot facility located in France’s version of Silicon Valley — Rennes’ Via Silva eco-city. Initially launched by CEO Frederic Rose in 2012, the facility grouped colorists, researchers and engineers together at one site. Today, teams at the R&D lab are working on a host of technologies for content creators and consumers related to virtual reality, augmented reality, stereoscopic video, 3D audio, the Internet of Things, and much more. Continue reading Technicolor Imagines the Future at Research & Innovation Lab

Oculus Rift Virtual Reality Technology Not Just About Gaming

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg imagined that the Oculus virtual reality technology his company acquired would eventually go beyond gaming — and it looks like that trend is already taking shape. Developers from a wide variety of industries are working on new apps for the Oculus Rift that could be used by stock traders, educators, psychiatrists, astronauts, filmmakers and others. The Oculus Rift is making VR more accessible because of its relatively low cost and growing variety of content. Continue reading Oculus Rift Virtual Reality Technology Not Just About Gaming

Avegant Glyph Audio Headset Also Impressive Retinal Display

While the Avegant Glyph will primarily be sold as an audio headset, it can also display content from any game console, television, smartphone, or tablet. The display uses two million mirrors to project video onto a user’s retina. The device also contains sensors to detect pulse, oxygen, pupil dilation, and temperature, so that games could become even more interactive. The $500 Avegant Glyph is expected to ship by March 2015; pre-orders are being accepted now. Continue reading Avegant Glyph Audio Headset Also Impressive Retinal Display

WSJD Live: James Cameron on Virtual Reality and Cinema

Speaking at the WSJD Live global tech conference in Laguna Beach on Wednesday, filmmaker James Cameron discussed how his upcoming “Avatar” sequels will be influenced by virtual reality, noting that he now directs his cast using VR headsets and is increasingly involving CGI designers more closely during the scriptwriting process. While he does not anticipate his three films to be viewed on VR headsets, Cameron envisions a future in which VR devices will impact how audiences experience movies. Continue reading WSJD Live: James Cameron on Virtual Reality and Cinema

‘Banshee Chapter’ Becomes First Feature Film for Oculus Rift

The 2013 horror indie “Banshee Chapter,” produced by Zachary Quinto and directed by Blair Erickson, is the first feature film to be released on Oculus Rift headsets. San Francisco-based Jamwix is making the movie available for free via its website. Jamwix’s Chimera software was used to convert “Banshee Chapter,” which was already shot in 3D, into a virtual reality feature. The digital studio is using the project to promote how Chimera can transition films into an immersive VR experience. Continue reading ‘Banshee Chapter’ Becomes First Feature Film for Oculus Rift

Zeiss Builds a $100 VR Headset That Works with Your Phone

German company Zeiss, known for its optics tech and premium camera lenses, is developing the VR One, a headset that uses a smartphone’s display, accelerometer, and gyroscope to give users a virtual reality experience. It is similar to Samsung’s Gear VR for the Galaxy Note 4 except the VR One is $100 cheaper and is an open project so that developers can help design the product. Currently, the VR One is compatible with the iPhone 6 and the Galaxy S5, but more phone tray options are coming soon. Continue reading Zeiss Builds a $100 VR Headset That Works with Your Phone

Google to Lead Investment in Magic Leap’s ‘Cinematic Reality’

Google may lead Andreessen Horowitz and other investors in a $500 million round of funding for Florida-based hardware and software maker Magic Leap, according to sources. The company is working on a new 3D experience that is more advanced than current virtual reality and augmented reality technologies. Magic Leap has released very few details about its “cinematic reality” tech, but it is most likely going to involve super high-resolution 3D images projected from special glasses. Continue reading Google to Lead Investment in Magic Leap’s ‘Cinematic Reality’

Oculus Rift Interstellar Experience Coming to IMAX Theaters

Christopher Nolan fans and moviegoers interested in the upcoming “Interstellar” can get a sneak peek at the galactic world through a 3D virtual reality experience. Participants will get a chance to wear Oculus Rift headsets and virtually explore the film’s spacecraft, which took two months for the team at Framestore to recreate. The Oculus Rift Interstellar Experience is hitting select AMC IMAX theaters in New York, Houston, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. before the film opens November 7. Continue reading Oculus Rift Interstellar Experience Coming to IMAX Theaters

EMA to Hold Sixth Annual Digital Media Pipeline Next Week

The Entertainment Merchants Association will hold its Digital Media Pipeline on October 8 at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. Celebrating its sixth year, Digital Media Pipeline is a one-day B2B event that brings together thought leaders to discuss digital delivery of home entertainment. ETC’s Phil Lelyveld will be a featured speaker as part of a next-gen technology panel. ETC community members are invited to attend the conference at the discounted EMA member price of $295. Continue reading EMA to Hold Sixth Annual Digital Media Pipeline Next Week

Iowa Newspaper Uses Oculus Rift for ‘Explanatory’ Journalism

The Des Moines Register, which reaches 420,000 readers, has launched a virtual reality story to examine how the demographic and economic changes in Iowa are affecting one farming family. The readers of the paper can step into the Dammann family farm and click on objects to learn about how different issues impact Iowa residents. Only 125,000 Oculus Rift headsets are in circulation, but this story may be one of the first steps toward integrating VR into journalism. Continue reading Iowa Newspaper Uses Oculus Rift for ‘Explanatory’ Journalism

Oculus Debuts Crescent Bay VR Prototype at LA Conference

Oculus unveiled its latest VR headset, currently named “Crescent Bay,” at a Hollywood event over the weekend. Some 800 developers attended Oculus Connect, the company’s first conference, to check out the new device. While not yet commercially available, the prototype promises a more comfortable, natural experience. Crescent Bay features 360-degree motion tracking, integrated headphones and improved ergonomics. It is not the consumer version, but is “sprinting toward” it, explained chief exec Brendan Iribe. Continue reading Oculus Debuts Crescent Bay VR Prototype at LA Conference

Virtual Reality Helmet Could Redefine In-Flight Entertainment

The United States Patent and Trademark Office granted leading aircraft manufacturer Airbus a patent in August for headrests that include helmets attached to a carrier. The headrests will relieve passenger stress by providing entertainment in addition to “sensorial isolation with regard to the external environment.” They will play immersive multimedia content on glasses with display screens that are capable of “holographic projection mode,” according to the patent. Continue reading Virtual Reality Helmet Could Redefine In-Flight Entertainment

IBC 2014: NextVR Unveils 360-Degree 3D VR Camera System

NextVR, a virtual reality technology and content company, introduced a 360-degree 3D virtual reality rig outfitted with six RED Epic Dragon cameras at IBC in Amsterdam last week. The “NextVR Virtual Reality Digital Cinema Camera System” supports the recording and live streaming of immersive, ultra high definition, stereoscopic content at 60fps and includes spatial audio capture. NextVR also unveiled VR content acquired with the equipment, displaying it on the new Samsung Gear VR headset. Continue reading IBC 2014: NextVR Unveils 360-Degree 3D VR Camera System

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