Apple today has started selling the View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack on its online store. With all the news about the company building out and prototyping virtual reality tech, it’s interesting to see it offering a glimpse at what that future tech may be by selling the device on the online store. Harkening back to the classic ideals of the View-Masters from the past, the new View-Master allows users to go on exciting new adventures. Utilizing a mix of augmented reality and virtual reality, these adventures are now taken to a whole new level. Taking advantage of Experience Packs, users can navigate space, various destinations, and wildlife through a mix of AR and VR.
Augmented reality February 5
Augmented reality February 3
An amateur astronomer friend has a motorized telescope that allows you to tap in the name of the object you want to see – a constellation, a planet, a deep-sky object – and it automatically locates them in the sky. Universe2go offers an equally hi-tech but more casual approach to stargazing suitable for beginners – including kids.
Universe2go is an augmented reality system that uses your iPhone to do the clever stuff. In essence, it’s a more sophisticated version of Google Cardboard. You open the companion app on your iPhone, snap your phone into the plastic enclosure and then look through the goggles at the night sky. An angled mirror overlays your actual view of the sky with labels from the app.
Pause with the green pointer over a planet or constellation, and the app provides visual data and an audio commentary. Alternatively, choose an object in advance and the app uses the display to direct you to the correct part of the sky before using the augmented reality system to highlight it …
Augmented reality January 29
During this week’s earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook answered a question on virtual reality by saying “I don’t think VR is a niche…It’s really cool and has some interesting applications.” It looks like Cook’s statements have some background to them. According to a new Financial Times report, Apple had reportedly been prototyping VR headsets in the past under Steve Jobs in the mid-2000s, but the project was eventually abandoned once the technology was found to still be immature. With new acquisitions and a dedicated VR team, the effort is said to be once again a new focus.
Augmented reality January 27
Apple has long been rumored to have an interest in the virtual reality market, but the company itself has always remained quiet on the technology. That’s not an unusual strategy for Apple, though, as it often only makes very general, or even negative, comments about a technology until it is ready to announce its own foray into a market. During the company’s earnings call for the first quarter of 2016, however, CEO Tim Cook was asked about his opinions on virtual reality.
Speaking on the call, Cook said that he thinks virtual reality has some interesting applications and noted that he doesn’t think it is a niche market, a comment often used against the technology by its naysayers. “I don’t think VR is a niche,” Cook said. “It’s really cool and has some interesting applications.”
This begs the question as to what exactly Apple has planned for virtual reality. There are a variety of possibilities, some of which companies like Google have already capitalized on. As we’ve learned in the past, however, Apple has no problem with launching its own version of a technology later in the game. So, let’s talk about some of the potential places in which Apple could implement virtual and augmented reality technologies…
Augmented reality January 21
According to a new report out of the Financial Times, Apple has hired one of the top virtual reality researchers in the United States to expedite its efforts in the platform. The report claims that Apple has recently hired Doug Bowman, who most recently was a computer science professor at Virginia Tech before taking a sabbatical. At Virginia Tech, he was the director of the university’s human-computer interaction center for around five years.
Augmented reality August 31, 2015
Apple has recently hired a lead engineer from Microsoft’s HoloLens team, leading to more speculation that it could be working on its own augmented reality project behind the scenes.
Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster first spotted the change of positions for Nick Thompson, who was reportedly previously leading audio hardware engineering efforts for Microsoft’s Hololens augmented reality project: expand full story