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Inside AR

Inside AR (Jun 3rd, 2019)

1. The 10th Augmented World Expo (AWE) concluded last week in California, and industry pundits believe it was the most important edition of the event to date. Charlie Fink gives an extensive overview of some of the most interesting tech and spatial computing trends to emerge from the conference which brought together over 7,000 attendees, 250 exhibitors and 350 speakers in a 20,000-square-feet immersive “Playground.” The article also includes the list of winners for this year's coveted Auggie Awards, which recognize immersive industry innovation across several categories. – FORBES

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2. Hannu Rajaniemi paints a dystopian view of a future dominated by augmented reality. As part of The New York Times' “Op-Eds From the Future,” series, the science fiction author offers a chilling scenario of a world where immersive technology has effectively obliterated the concept of private spaces. The fictional piece is told from the perspective of Mary Lennox, a teenager living in the future who rebels against the status quo by removing her iGlasses and experiencing an unaugmented world. – NEW YORK TIMES

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3. By the Numbers: Augmented Reality Smartglasses Outlook. In its latest survey, conducted at this year’s Augmented World Expo (AWE) Digi-Capital polled a range of AR/VR CEOs, C-Suite execs, corporate VPs and AWE community members to get a gage of where insiders believe the immersive industry is headed. This has been published as part of the company's Augmented/Virtual Reality Report  Q2 2019 which forecasts enterprise smartglasses scaling to millions of users by 2023, driven by Microsoft, Google and a range of startups. Interestingly, in spite of the fact that Apple is yet to launch a product in this space, the survey indicates that the company is already a serious contender.  Apple has already attracted 43 percent of industry support for a smartglasses product about which it has said and revealed nothing, so it is not unreasonable to expect that it could sell several tens of millions of “Apple Glasses” to early-adopter consumers by 2023. This is partly due to the fact that the ARKit installed base is set to approach three-quarters of a billion devices this year, and top 800 million in 2020. – VENTUREBEAT

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 4. Google has added a host of AR animals to its search results. Following the announcement at this year's Google I/O conference in May, the company has started enabling AR layering of 3D models on the real world. The feature is now available on Android smartphones and AR-enabled iPhones, enabling users to type in the name of an animal as a search query, and - if they are part of the supported list - bring them up on the AR view on the device. Currently, available models include alligator, brown bear, macaw, raccoon, penguin, pug, shark, and Shetland pony. – DIGITAL TRENDS

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5. Samsung is working on multiple AR and VR products. Speaking at an AWE panel, Farshid Fallah, Samsung’s director of developer relations for XR and gaming conceded that things had "moved on" since the Samsung gear, but was bullish about the company's future role in the immersive hardware market. – TRUSTED REVIEWS

6. You can get an augmented reality, blockchain-powered pet. MotomoPets was released to coincide with Hari Raya - a religious festival celebrated by Muslims in Singapore and Malaysia - and aims to encourage fun and interactive social interactions between friends and family during the festive season. – STUFF

 7. CNBC continues to experiment with immersive tech in its broadcasts. Following previous stunts which let a virtual bull and bear loose in their studio, Friday's  Fast Money: Halftime Report, with Meg Tirrell, featured an AR “Stocks to Watch” logo and stock data chart inserted on the walls in one corner of the newsroom. The technology CNBC uses is powered by Brainstorm Multimedia and designed in house. – NEWSCAST STUDIO

8. Facebook’s Oculus Quest headset will get a Mozilla browser soon. A Mozilla spokesperson told Variety that Firefox Reality has been prepared and tested by Oculus and is ready for release "within the first month.” – VARIETY

9. VR may help improve quality of life for dementia sufferers. Researchers at the University of Kent in the U.K. evaluated whether virtual reality could promote the well-being of individuals with moderate to severe dementia living in a psychiatric hospital. The study was published in Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems and details how the technology can stimulate patients to recall past memories, reduce aggressive behavior, and connect with caregivers.–  ALZHEIMERS NEWS TODAY

10. A new platform for virtual classrooms allows remote students to sit in on classes in real time, watching live streams of lectures and interacting with each other as well as with teachers and the on-site students. The Glimpse Group has filed for a patent on its technology entitled "Project Chimera," and is now working to secure partnerships with colleges and universities that want to try out the system. –  THE JOURNAL

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This newsletter was written and curated by Alice Bonasio, a journalist and consultant obsessed with the immersive technology space, including AR/VR/MR/XR and any other acronyms that fit into the realities spectrum. Over the past 15 years, Alice has advised a wide range of start-ups and corporations on digital transformation and communication strategy and is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Tech Trends. She also regularly contributes to publications such as Quartz, Fast Company, Wired, Playboy, The Next Web, Ars Technica, VRScout and many others. Follow her on Twitter @alicebonasio

 

Editing team: Kim Lyons (Pittsburgh-based journalist and managing editor at Inside) and David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology).

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