HTC has announced a new set of tools allowing developers to build applications which take advantage of the Vive Pro’s stereo front-facing cameras, effectively turning the device into an AR headset dev kit. The new tools allow the cameras to capture depth, spatial mapping data, hand input, and seamlessly shift between VR and AR worlds.
This means you have some choice if you’re a developer looking to build software for headsets that mix a digital reality with the real world. You can sign up for the Magic Leap SDK and try to get your hands on hard-to-get hardware from the company while swearing yourself to secrecy. Or you can think about getting a product like the Zed Mini or Vive Pro to more quickly and openly explore your ideas.
Any idea if Pimax is looking for a partner to make something similar? I’d love to be able to see on the other side of the lens, know if anyone is looking at me. Or just knowing if i’m about to hit an object…
I’m counting on there being some kind of pass-through camera module in the future, like the Vive 1.0 has (at least). I believe it was mentioned in the original kickstarter description in the list of possible modules, though has not been confirmed yet.
Came across this mod for the VIVE and VIVE Pro and thought it was really interesting… replacing the VIVE’s frensel lenses with the lenses from a GearVR to improve the fresnel ring distortions on the VIVE. Looked really simple to do actually.
I have the original Leap Motion and looking at my room in infrared is kinda cool. The world looks exactly as real as a VR world except all objects are in place. It’s fun to feel like you’re in a made-up world while you’re not. Very meta. Much wow.
Yup… there’s a config mod that needs to be tweaked by the user to use this mod to correct the barrel distortion. But it really doesn’t surprise me that some will like it and others will hate it. Reminds me of people removing the shutter shades of the Pimax 4K… some like it, some hate it. SweViver says he’s going to give this VIVE mod a try and do a video.
If anything… if people are willing to risk damaging a $800 device to swap lenses, hopefully VR producers will take note and design future HMD’s with swappable lenses because of the many reviews and the tons of comments on all the various brands of VR I have read through the years, it’s clear to me… people are different and a one-size fits all HMD (sort of speak) … just ain’t gonna work. And I’m not talking about just the lenses… just about everything in HMD’s today… head straps, controllers, speakers, etc…
I’m sorry Cdake for hi-jacking this thread on a different topic… I should have created a new one.
I read a developer tweet that the Vive Pro’s front-facing cameras are still the same resolution as the original Vive’s front-facing camera, which was like VGA resolution, 640x480 or some such. Which would really suck for pass-through AR video. I have a better solution, Stereolabs ZED Mini stereo camera designed to be attached to a Vive or an Oculus Rift; its cameras are 720p, which while still not ideal, are far better than VGA Plus Stereolabs’ software is amazing at depth sensing, it can actually sense depth 20 meters away, and can even be used to make your apps use inside-out tracking, not needing your headset’s normal tracking sensors. Requires a fairly hefty PC/video card, but it’s a great way to get started developing for AR.
Here’s a little AR demo I made with ZED Mini and my Oculus Rift:
The advantage to the Vive Pro AR SDK, it looks like it supports hand tracking. ZED Mini’s SDK does hand occlusion, and returns enough data for a skilled developer to be able to figure out a certain level of hand tracking by using the depth of the camera scene, but so far has no ready-made API for developers to track hands (but they are continually working in the SDK, so it could be added in the future).
Yes I know that for the “no not really” AR in near IR without real color and in low res is fun but not very useful closer to a hack a day feat than anything else. if HTC was serious about Mix reality the would have put better cameras on the PRO. It’s a plus but not really a PRO
For my part the north star open source project from leap motion seems far more interesting for AR