Inside XR - November 9th, 2017 |

Inside XR (Nov 9th, 2017)

SteamVR for Windows / Harry Potter AR game / RideVR theme park headsets

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Microsoft is going to let its Windows Mixed Reality users preview SteamVR games starting on Nov. 15. The company did not reveal when its full support for SteamVR will be finalized, but the beta feature will allow users access to a lot more VR titles. Currently Windows Mixed Reality headset owners only have access to around 60 apps and games from the Windows Store. SteamVR's library of content is already supported by HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. — VERGE

Niantic is making a new Harry Potter AR game. The company previously produced the breakout hit Pokémon Go as well as its first mobile AR game Ingress. The new title, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, will launch on mobile devices in 2018. It's not the first game based on Harry Potter — in 2016, one of the first Google Daydream View VR experiences was Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, in which the controller was used to operate a virtual wand. — VRSCOUT

VR Coaster and Sensics have partnered to create RideVR, all-in-one VR headsets for theme parks. The headset's display can detach from the head and chin strap while guests are adjusting the fit, and the face masks are hypo-allergenic, reusable, and machine washable.  VR Coaster holds patents for mobile VR headsets on rides and its technology is used in 40 theme parks; Sensics was the co-producer of the HDK headset and has already built a headset similar to the RideVR design for room-scale VR experiences. — ROADTOVR

Intel is partnering with Turner Sports to broadcast select NBA games in VR. Intel's True VR technology uses custom stereoscope camera pods that allow viewers to pick any camera angle or watch the default broadcast camera, and is used for NFL and MLB streams. Most NBA games are broadcast in VR via NextVR, which will stream 27 games this season, but Intel's True VR platform will broadcast certain marquee games airing on TNT during the second half of the season. — ENGADGET

A study published in the Journal of Pediatric Psychology in October found that using VR significantly reduced the pain and anxiety of patients. The research was conducted using 143 pediatric patients, half of which were given VR to use while having blood drawn. Another recent study done at Cedars-Sinai hospital in Los Angeles found that using VR reduced patients' average self-reported pain score from 5.4 out of ten to 4.1.— MOBI HEALTHNEWS

Dinner Party is the VR recreation of a couple's alien abduction in 1961. The project was made possible by an Alternate Realities grant, and storytellers Laura Wexler and Charlotte Stoudt (producer of House of Cards and Homeland) developed the concept at the Sundance New Frontier Lab. The pair also had a fellowship at Technicolor Experience Center where they had access to visual effects experts and tools, and the result is the two-part VR experience. Dinner Party is the first in a series called "The Incident," which is meant to be the "Twilight Zone" of the VR era. — ENGADGET

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