Virtual and Augmented Reality Continue to Mature

Carl Weinschenk
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10 Myths About Virtual Mobile Infrastructure

Thursday shapes up to be an important day for virtual reality (VR) as Google’s Daydream View VR headset, which integrates with the new Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones, goes on sale.

The trio will be available through the Google Store and at Verizon and Best Buy physical locations, according to eWeek. The headset, which was announced last month, will also be available in Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany and Australia soon.

The story suggests Daydream View represents an evolution and maturation of the category. For instance, the Daydream View uses “soft fabrics and materials that are comfortable on a wearer’s face” and is as much as 30 percent lighter than other viewers. The piece also suggests that there is a growing amount of content available for use on the device.


VR seems to be an area in which Microsoft would excel. The company hasn’t until now, according to The Motley Fool. A piece at the site suggests that that could change, and cited its Windows 10 event late last month as the potential turning point. It pointed out several keys to the company’s strategy. One is the rationale behind the tethering of its VR headsets to PCs: Its approach is easier to set up and enables multiple users in the same area. Also, Microsoft’s VR platform is more affordable and its entry-level devices can serve as “training wheels” for the HoloLens, which is far more expensive.

The VR and augmented reality (AR) categories are particularly important for businesses of all sorts to track because there are as many – or more – potent uses for both in the business world as in the consumer world. One example, featured at Nerd Wallet, is real estate, where AR and VR can be very potent sales tools:

Matterport is now adding elements of augmented reality — the superimposing of computer elements onto real settings — to its walkthroughs, says CEO Bill Brown. ‘In addition to being able to walk through the space, people can mark in objects within the space, and they can annotate those objects,’ he says. These notes can highlight features such as granite countertops or energy-efficient appliances.

The list of ways in which AR and VR can support business is endless. It can help in the huge areas of training and maintenance, for instance. The reality is that changing or adding to what is happening for a user is a game-changer. Alibaba understands that and last week invested $15 million in Infinity Augmented Reality, which is a gaming, medicine and training AR company.

Business, from the factory floor to the training room and the showroom, is likely to be the biggest beneficiary of the fascinating technology. This will be true in the short- and long-term. It is a confusing and quickly evolving arena that must be watched closely.

Carl Weinschenk covers telecom for IT Business Edge. He writes about wireless technology, disaster recovery/business continuity, cellular services, the Internet of Things, machine-to-machine communications and other emerging technologies and platforms. He also covers net neutrality and related regulatory issues. Weinschenk has written about the phone companies, cable operators and related companies for decades and is senior editor of Broadband Technology Report. He can be reached at cweinsch@optonline.net and via twitter at @DailyMusicBrk.

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