Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality – Unity Vision 2017 Summit is where the industry’s ideas and the innovators came together.
Unity Vision 2017 was a great place for spotting emerging trends, and none was quite as hot on everyone’s lips as Augmented Reality/Mixed Reality (AR/MR). The keynote included some major announcements that herald a new era for the AR ecosystem.
The CEO, Katella, stated that “the industry in its actual performance will cross the line in the analysis and exceed with the analyst source by the year 2023 by considering the key points which includes:
Price: The price point for the CPU and GPU, the head-mounted display on the controllers should not exceed $1000 if the company would want to hit a mass market.
Mobility: It’s either in your head-mounted display or it may be a mobile phone strapped into your back pocket but what you’re going to get is the full kit. You’re going to be mobile for you to make the investments that are required to dream the big dream.”
Building on the fact that 91% of all HoloLens applications are built in Unity, Brandon Bray… Principal Group Manager of Microsoft, announced that mixed reality would soon be available for Unity developers. Then, building on the tradition of wild giveaways at Vision Summit, he gifted everybody in the audience a new Acer MR headset.
Google Tango with Unity
At Unite LA, Google Product Manager Nathan Martz announced the launch date for Daydream and confirmed that a Unity integration was on deck for Unity 5.6. Fast-forward six months and he took the stage to make possibly an even bigger announcement: that Unity is now integrated with Google Tango.
Furthermore, Daydream will be getting an update this month to allow creators to test VR and AR alterations in their applications in minutes. This revelation is a quiet but assured inflection point, bridging the gap between VR and AR content creation. Now, developers will be able to bring their knowledge of VR workflows in Unity directly into AR development – especially useful for multi-platform and multimedia immersive content.
As another leader in the AR/MR space, Vuforia debuted Smart Terrain for Tango-enabled devices. This new feature further enmeshes base reality with digital reality by allowing creators to build AR experiences that dynamically interact with real world environments.
During the keynote, Jay Wright, President of Vuforia, showed how Smart Terrain and Tango were able to transform the stage into Mars and summon an astronaut who understood the geometry of the IRL world to “drill” into the digital ice on Mars that was transposed onto the podium.
This use of Smart Terrain will function as the sample app when Vuforia is integrated with Unity later in 2017.
If there is one place everybody agreed AR/MR technologies are going to revolutionize, it’s enterprise. AR pioneers ScopeAR took the stage to show off how this revolution is going to look with WorkLink. This AR training solution single-handedly erases the need for training manuals – workers across fields will be able to learn complex tasks in the most intuitive imaginable way: through their own eyes.
Unity continues to set the standard – in a literal sense – for how VR is built, but it’s the company’s work in fostering the growth of the VR ecosystem that has established the Unity name as a pioneering one in evolving the language of immersive media. As you can see, development rules are changing fast to enable rapid content creation in the world of AR.