Google I/O 2019 saw the launch of several new services and products. These included the Pixel Fold, Pixel 7a and a new Pixel Tablet. Also, they announced updates for their AI technology. These included improvements to natural language processing as well as new features in their Google Assistant. Google Maps is going to get more augmented-reality (AR), allowing users see virtual information superimposed on the real world. This feature will give users more information about their environment, including directions, menus of restaurants, and reviews. Google is working on an AR mode that will allow users to view 3D objects within their environment using their smartphone’s camera. AR Insider said in November that visual searching like this is going to grow quickly this coming year. It will create a new revenue stream.
The column I wrote this week was significantly improved by upgrading to ChatGPT Pro. It is a free web version that allows you to cheat in the 7th grade history exam. ChatGPT’s paid version is exactly what they claim it to be. The paid version of ChatGPT saved me two hours at the very least, and made my repetitive work a little less tedious. I was simply cutting and pasting, looking for hallucinations. (There were several), and then correcting by hand. I’m just starting to understand the incredible potential of this technology.
This is a bad thing. If a writer can write a story in ⅓ the time, there are ⅔ too many writers.
Niantic’s New Peridot mobile AR Game A Spritely Mix of Pokemon Go and Tamagotchi. Niantic owns the IP to Pokemon Go. Peridot is the company’s first original location-based AR game since Ingress. The new game combines the location-based gameplay of the company’s games Ingress and Pokemon Go, with a virtual beings like Tamagotchi, the keychain virtual pet from Bandai was a pre-teen fad the 90s. Amazon integrates shopping for the very first time into a videogame. The game is receiving high praise from critics. Peridot can understand their surroundings using computer vision. Critters can hide behind the couch or under a desk. (x)
You: Summarize Peridot as if you were singing a Hamilton song.
How well does Niantic’s Peridot game do?
Some people say that it is a new and exciting pair
Unique blend of AR-style and RPG
Others think it is difficult to fix its flaws
Peridot – Peridot – a game of AR
Catching creatures and fighting from afar
Does Niantic’s newest venture go far?
Peridot is a game of AR
Amazon debuts “Amazon Anywhere,” in Niantic’s new mobile AR game Peridot. Customers can now purchase physical goods from virtual worlds, interactive environments such as videogames, augmented reality, and mobile apps. It is a major change, as most virtual worlds have only allowed users to purchase virtual items and virtual currency. Peridot gamers can buy Peridot brand products within the game, including t-shirts, phone accessories, and other items, after linking their Amazon account. The products will be delivered as with any other Amazon order, and tracking and order management are available through the Amazon app. (x)
USC launches $1bn XR Generative AI Initiative. The University of Southern California has launched a $1billion initiative to advance mixed reality and generative AI. The XR AI project will bring together engineers, artists, and researchers to explore the possibilities of these technologies across a variety of fields including entertainment, education and healthcare. (ChatGPT)
Gio VR headset’s killer app: watching cricket. Moksha Technologies, an Indian tech company, has developed a new VR headset specifically for cricket enthusiasts. The headset provides an immersive experience for cricket games and events. Fans can watch matches as though they were in the stadium.(ChatGPT)
Last stand of IVAS? Army faces new challenges and delays in the future of augmented-reality goggles. The US Army’s Integrated Visual Augmentation System is currently facing delays and new challenges as it debates the future for its augmented-reality goggles. The IVAS program aims to provide soldiers with advanced AR technologies for situational awareness, and other tactical purposes. (ChatGPT)
PGA Tour brings augmented-reality to golf tournaments. The PGA Tour is launching an augmented reality for golfers who attend its events. The AR feature is called “AR Shot Tracker,” and it overlays virtual ball-flight tracks and other data to real-world shot in real time. This gives fans a whole new level of insight into the game. (ChatGPT)
Researchers create wearable device to simulate virtual reality’s smell. Researchers at the University of California San Diego created a wearable device to simulate smells within virtual reality. The “Smell-O-VR” device uses cartridges that release different scents. Users can experience the smells while moving through a virtual world. (ChatGPT)
Meta recently changed its Horizon Workrooms App, making it impossible to schedule events for world builders. App that allows users create and attend virtual meetings and events in the Metaverse has become popular among creators. AltSpaceVR, which was shut down, no longer hosts events. The update introduced a limitation on the number of virtual events that could be held in one space. This has frustrated some VR club programmers. (ChatGPT)
The global AR market will reach $597.54 billion by 2030, led by Enterprise Applications. Grandview Research has released a new report that examines the economic impact of metaverse technology, including the creation and growth of several industries. The market growth is attributed to the increased adoption of AR technology in various industry verticals such as automotive and healthcare, education and construction, among others. (x)
Roblox’s improved Metaverse fails to generate substantial revenues. Roblox’s users have not generated significant revenue, even after improving the metaverse. The platform’s focus is on free-to play games and virtual goods, but this hasn’t translated into significant spending by its users. (ChatGPT)
This Week in XR podcast is also available. The show is hosted by Ted Schilowitz (author of this article), Rony Abovitz (founder of Magic Leap), and Ted Schilowitz. Steve Zaho was our guest for this week. Steve is the CEO and founder of Sandbox. Sandbox offers a series of VR attractions that are free to roam. We are available on Spotify iTunes and YouTube.
What We’re Reading
Why generative artificial intelligence is more dangerous than we think (Louis Rosenberg/VentureBeat)
This Week’s Schadenfreude
The Metaverse Has Definitely Lost Steam — But Is It Dead (Nathan Sinnott/Entrepreneur)
How Mark Zuckerberg Lead the Tech Industry Into a Metaverse Wasteland (John Herrman/NY Mag)
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