Recent News in 3D, AR, VR & Metaverse
© Metaverse PSD created by Kerfin7
On May 24–25, Niantic hosted the Lightship Summit to demo its AR development kit and its range of capabilities. Known by many as the Pokémon Go creators, Niantic has made a place for itself in the industry by integrating location and AR into interactive experiences. The Lightship development kit furthers this mission by providing a Visual Positioning System (VPS) that allows user’s devices to recognize where they are based on what the camera sees around them, leading users to be able to create and store digital objects and information in specific places around the world. AR technology such as this is set to be the backbone of a large digital world.
© Niantic. Niantic Lightship’s vision of a location-based AR world.
echo3D introduced support for Niantic Lightship to help Metaverse developers build highly-dynamic AR. Learn more here.
Spatial computing expert and journalist Robert Scoble has remarked that, in the near future, Apple “will be in charge of [consumer-facing AR].” Apple was expected to reveal hints about its expected Q2 2023 XR device at the recent WWDC event but left attendees with more clues and questions than a direct demonstration. Relevant to AR experiences, Apple revealed its RoomPlan API which allows users to scan their room with a camera and create a 3D model of the outline of their room. It is predicted that this will be useful for future cases regarding Apple AR applications. Another idea being developed by Apple is RealityOS, an operating system predicted to manage operations between the entire Apple ecosystem of devices as its AR platforms start entering the market.
The RealityOS trademark. Source: US Patent and Trademark Office
Google has acquired California startup Raxium to be integrated into their Devices and Services division. The Raxium team has spent over five years conducting research and development around small, high-resolution displays. This connects well with a goal of developing augmented reality glasses, which Google previously demonstrated interest in with its early 2013 product, Google Glass. This time around, Google is looking to tap into its large goldmine of location data aggregated by Google Maps and Google Earth to create location-based AR experiences. An early example of this goal is the augmented reality feature of Google Maps, which takes in local buildings and a GPS location to help guide a user with 3D waypoints laid over a camera view.
Meta recently added an asset library of 100 pre-built items to their metaverse social media application, Horizon Worlds, so that users can expand their digital designs. This raises the question of performance — if these assets are stored locally on the Meta Quest, then regular updates would be required to make changes to the Horizon Worlds environment. This approach would seemingly lead to endless update downloads and to a situation where the application takes up more and more storage, requiring users to make a decision of what applications to keep or delete. Solutions such as echo3D allow developers to stream 3D content from the cloud to their applications, requiring less storage and no need for constant updates on the user side. Meta’s future plans include a device that has a full color version of their Passthrough technology, which lets users view digital objects into the real world through the headset camera. Soon, users might be able to store a whole room’s worth of objects in their headset. Users with consistent internet will absolutely be able to save space by using services such as echo3D to stream their objects instead of storing them.
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echo3D has officially confirmed an investment from Qualcomm Ventures as part of the latter’s $100M “Metaverse Fund” dedicated to companies in the 3D/Metaverse space. Qualcomm has stated that “these investments highlight our interest in supporting transformative companies building next-generation experiences.” Qualcomm is a multi-national corporation that offers hardware and services related to wireless technology. In the XR space, Qualcomm is known for providing SnapDragon, a suite of chips that power many mobile XR devices and is expected to power consumer XR products in the future.
According to Danielle Tran from Konvoy Ventures, “This fund launch is unsurprising. Qualcomm, similar to Meta and Epic, is allocating capital to creators to utilize their platforms. While it’s too early to tell, it is possible that their Dev Platform becomes the standard for AR developers.” Technology from Qualcomm, coupled with cloud-based 3D content management and distribution platforms such as echo3D would allow developers to focus more on creating the experiences they want to make, and less on trying to figure out how to stop their application from slowing down or crashing.
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© echo3D. echo3D allows users to quickly display AR content from the cloud
Sign up to the echo3D platform for free to create this yourself! By Nino DeBarros
echo3D (www.echo3D.co; Techstars ’19) is a cloud platform for 3D/AR/VR that provides tools and network infrastructure to help developers & companies quickly build and deploy 3D apps, games, and content.