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Inside XR (Jul 5th, 2016)

Data from Steam suggests that the HTC Vive install base is nearing the 100,000 mark, a number arrived at by tracking ownership figures of Job Simulator, a VR game bundled with the Vive upon purchase. This puts the Vive way ahead of the Oculus Rift in relative sales, but as far as the relevance of the Steam data, milage will vary . – ROAD TO VR

Readers: do you think we're going to see one company emerge as the big winner for VR headsets, or will it be a complex landscape of different companies with different focuses/strengths?

Japan's first VR pornography festival was ended early due to over-attendance. "I'm sure there was a line inside the building that rivaled the one outside," said one reporter who was unable to get in. Those who did get in saw many, many NSFW gadgets that promise a robust future for the niche. (The story has made for many, many, many cheeky headlines.) – VR TALK

Jason Lovell, senior product manager at Samsung VR, told the audience at The Drum’s Future of Marketing Event that “the future of VR is about playing back your own life, no visiting an app store.” Lovell believes VR will be driven into the mainstream via consumers creating their own content, rather than branded content purchased externally: “It’s more bespoke to them, and it’s more relevant to their lives.” (Samsung is releasing their Gear 360 camera later this year.) – THE DRUM

Forbes profiles Rimmel London’s new Get The Looks AR app, "the Shazam for beauty," which allows users to “try on” looks they find in magazines or from friends in real life. The tech allows the subject to move their facial muscles with the AR makeup reacting like physically applied makeup would. – FORBES

The Beatlemania Experience, a new exhibition preparing for a run in Brazil, will include a VR experience recreating the band's final live show at Shea Stadium in 1965. While details of the project are slim, the idea is to put a viewer in one of the best seats in the house for show. (Upload VR suggests there will be plenty of "CGI magic" deployed, since "it would have taken a lot of foresight to capture footage that could have been stitched together to make a VR video 51 years ago.") – UPLOAD VR

Researchers at Germany's Technical University of Munich has created an augmented reality system that can assist rescue helicopter pilots navigate through dense fog. The project uses a mounted LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) system to create rudimentary images of immediate hazards, which are then transmitted to the pilot's transparent display. – DIGITAL TRENDS

A VR component for Nintendo's next-gen NX console is apparently not a sure thing, as the Japanese company is uncertain how to implement the tech going forward. Investors were told at Nintendo's annual shareholders meeting that their current focus is dedicated to the NX system much moreso than what their future in VR may be. Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of Mario, Donkey Kong, and Zelda, expressed concerns about "what parents will think if they see their children wearing headsets in the house." – VALUE WALK

Jesus VR - The Story of Christ will make its debut this December on all major devices. The 90 film with depict the birth, crucifixion, and resurrection in 360-degree 4K video shot on location in Matera, Italy. Autumn Productions has teamed up with VRWERX VR production for the film. (VRWERX previously created a VR game based on the Paranormal Activity movie series.) – INQUISITR

Road to VR reports on Sony's Ghostbusters Dimension mixed reality ride, which is navigated by walking around a stage that is overlaid with AR game details. The writer sees promise and says the success of the attraction lies in the "4D" element, but he does take issue with the clash between wanna-be game dynamics and the classic 'walk through' ride structure. – ROAD TO VR

Santa Monica's Luma pictures is looking for a VR Engineer.

Fermat Software in Austin, TX is looking for a Senior Software Engineer with experience in VR/AR.

Oculus is looking to hire a "jack of all trades" as Developer/Writer for their games department. 

zSpace in Sunnyvale, Ca is on the lookout for a VR R&D intern who has the summer months free.
Last week we asked readers how they felt about Samsung announcing exclusive VR Olympics coverage for its hardware, and whether that kind of exclusivity makes for a sensible business model.

Ben writes: "This model of restricting content consumption does not work with the way media is consumed today, which is across many different platforms. By limiting who has access, the number of people able to view the Olympics 360 video/VR content will be a fraction of what it could have been. Because of that, the 360 video/VR industry, including Samsung and NBC, will likely miss out on what could have been a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate how 360 video/VR can tell the story of a spectacle event with worldwide interest using this exciting new immersive storytelling tool."

James adds: "Lame of Olympics to have pay only VR access.  But funny as well... it's hard enough to get set up for the average VR experience. Think many will be too lazy to jump through all the hoops to get to it.  But overall, Olympics should be more accessible to the world... not just those that can afford it."

Kate says: "I really don’t care that much about the Olympics... But could someone explain why they are VRing the *lamest* parts of the already-lame Olympics? Who cares about the opening and closing ceremonies? Sorry."

No apologies necessary, Kate. Thanks for writing in!
At the Virtual Reality & The Metaverse subreddit, users discuss the news of Steam's data regarding the VIVE nearing an install base of 100,000. CrateDane says "This is highly inaccurate, and pointless. The Steam hardware survey is far more reliable. Couple the 0.15% Vive owners with the well over 125 million active Steam users, and you'll find the Vive install base is actually approaching 200,000."; paul_mendoza adds "I just got a vive. I had no idea there were bundled games. Need to figure out how to get those." The comments continue to delve into the mathematics behind the Steam data from there. 

Members at the augmented reality subreddit struggle heroically to determine whether a AR squash game actually qualifies as AR. Ped88 says "How can this be defined Augmented Reality?" FunWithBalls replies to him: "Easy, this tech is superimposing computer-generated images onto a user's view of the real world - in this case the back of a squash wall. I don't think AR is limited to indirect views." In response to FunWithBalls, Ped88 writes, "I agree that AR is not limited to indirect views (glasses, headsets, etc...), but what the difference between this and my excel presentation projected on a white board during a meeting?" And FunWithBalls sums it up: "But, this Squash system is a set of interactive games. For example, if you hit the block it explodes, or moves, or grows. It's not just there either, there's a goal. You have to win, or make something happen. I hope that makes more sense."
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