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Inside VR & AR

Inside VR & AR (Jul 10th, 2018)

1. Investor, former Senate Majority Leader, and erstwhile heart and lung surgeon Bill Frist writes in Forbes today about VR's potential in the healthcare space, even claiming "It Will Change Your Health." From distraction and redirection as a pain management strategy, to motivation and measurement in rehabilitation therapy, Frist outlines several healthcare use cases. "I believe that VR has the potential to radically change and substantially improve health-related behavior, and thus radically improve health and wellbeing, by equipping individuals with new and powerful tools to make smart decisions and engage in healthier behavior," Frist writes. — FORBES

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2. Sharp-eyed writers noticed that Samsung recently filed a curious trademark with the European Union Intellectual Property Office, suggesting the company is working on a new VR display that specifically addresses the screen door effectRoad to VR speculates the new Samsung display demoed at SID Display Week in May might have something to do with the trademark. Samsung supplies HTC with displays for the company's Vive Pro headsets. — ROADTOVR

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3. Snapchat code shows the company is working on a visual product search tool for its popular smartphone app. The system would work by allowing users to "press and hold to identify an object, song, barcode, and more," with data then sent to Amazon, Shazam and other "partners" for identification, according to TechCrunch. Snapchat posted a $385 million loss last quarter, so this could be a strategy for developing new revenue streams for the company. — TECHCRUNCH

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4. Facebook announced today that it will begin integrating AR advertisements into users' News Feeds. The program is in the testing phase, so only U.S. users will see the ads for now. That said, the demand is there, so depending on public reception, expect more features like this in the future. According to The Verge, there are already several large companies on board for the test, including Sephora, Wayfair and Pottery Barn. — THE VERGE

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5. Later this year, BBC will release two new VR experiences: "Make Noise" and "1943: Berlin Blitz." The first follows the suffragettes and asks the user to "hum, sing and shout along with narrator Nikki Amuka-Bird as they are transported through a series of colorful and abstract worlds that represent the stages of the suffragettes’ struggle," according to VRFocus. The second puts users into the shoes of BBC WWII war correspondent Wynford Vaughan-Thomas during his famous radio broadcast aboard a Lancaster Bomber during the raid on Berlin. No platforms have been announced for the experiences yet. — VRFOCUS

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6. It's true, Steven Spielberg did use an HTC Vive in the early stages of production for recent movie Ready Player One. There's even video of the director in action, taken from the extra feature content for the movie's home video release. As VR tech continues to evolve, I highly suspect we'll see more directors using this technology to help streamline the filmmaking process. — IGN

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7. Anyone else remember the painful, monochromatic, primordial Virtual Boy? Preservation of the few titles made for that platform have been 2D at best, but a new fan-made Virtual Boy emulator now lets users dig into Virtual Wario Land (and other VB software) without the headache or tweaked neck. According to VentureBeat, there's nothing groundbreaking here aside from better access to one of VR's early experiments. — VENTUREBEAT

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8. Hydrate, start with a small dose, work your way up...

"Made a rookie decision to play with my VR headset for about 3 hours and now actual reality is a nauseous hot mess " - @amymarieg

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9. Remember what Bill Frist was talking about at the top?

"Using VR to learn how to give anesthesia at WISER #anesthesia #technology #Pitt #ANES18 #ASA" - @UPMCAnesDusty

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10. If that's now, how will a midlife crisis look in 10 years?

"I thought my midlife crisis was done but today I projected a game of Tetris onto my cupboard door whilst wearing a VR headset." - @Jamie_Doughty

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