ByteDance, the parent company of China-based TikTok, became the second social media giant to buy a virtual reality company. Just after posting our round last Friday, rumors started swirling around ByteDance buying VR Pico maker HMD. Monday was confirmed. The social media giant dropped 5 billion yuan (~ $ 775 million) in Pico, which is the third of the top four VR HMD companies (the first two are Facebook and Sony, the fourth is HTC). Pico is the number one handset in China, and has incidents in business use in the west. Tik Tok is growing faster than Facebook right now, as it has recently become the second mobile app with over three billion downloads. Pico had raised $ 62 million in risk financing, including the recent $ 37 million Series B in March. Clearly, both ByteDance and Facebook think virtual reality is the next social networking platform. Will Pico and Oculus divide the market by geography? Going from head to toe? While this works, it will be good for virtual reality.
The VR selections from the Venice Film Festival can be seen until September 19th i Burning Man VR can be accessed at AltSpace.
T-Mobile’s 5G network enables the human corpse VR lab at Fisk University VictoryXR, T-Mobile, and HTC Vive recently teamed up to deliver a VR corpse lab with 5G technology to Fisk University, a HBCU (Historically Black College and University) located in Nashville, TN.
27 virtual reality applications for remote work, education, training, design review and more Ben Lang, founder, editor and editor of Path to virtual reality offers a great overview of Facebook Horizons Workrooms competitors. It has most of our favorites, like Engage, Spatial.io, Glue, Arthur and Virbela, but the category is growing so fast that we think Ben may have lost a dozen or so.
Lenovo and RealWear team up to provide assisted reality solutions to business customers. Lenovo’s global sales network will provide customers with RealWear’s HMT-1 portable reality solutions and Lenovo and RealWear certify the HMT-1 device for Lenovo’s ThinkReality XR cloud platform.
This AR app for Oculus Quest will teach you the piano. Dominik Hackl is preparing to launch the first playable demo of the app called Magic Keys for Oculus Quest.
The application of the tap of reality brings realistic physics to augmented reality. Users can play physically realistic augmented reality using LiDAR on iPhone Pros and iPad Pros. Reality Faucet is the first augmented reality application with realistic physics, which allows you to dynamically interact various virtual objects with a user’s real environment. The app is available for free today in the App Store, with free and paid integrated purchases.
Owlchemy Labs Previews Cosmonious High, which will be released in the spring of 2022. Google’s VR studio, responsible for the famous “Office Simulator” and “Vacation Simulator,” has established its new game at an outside institute and will feature AI-powered NPCs.
This week on XR is now a podcast hosted by Viacom / CBS futurist Ted Schilowitz and Charlie Fink, the author of this weekly column. You can find it on the Spotify, iTunes and YouTube podcast platforms.
What we are reading
Why won’t Facebook’s mission to create a virtual reality metavers work? (Prof. Scott Galloway / Business Insider)
Can the metaverse thrive if it is wholly owned by Facebook? (Wired)