VR Theme Parks, Killer Eye-Tracking Apps, and AR Ads. Five XR need-to-knows for 2019.
Josh Strupp BlockedUnblockFollowFollowing Mar 3
Here We Go Again
Virtual, mixed, and augmented reality. The heads-up display and reality-altering technologies that were supposed to revolutionize everything from gaming to socializing to porn. Despite a lack of VR "killer apps" and AR app adoption, the
虚拟，混合和增强现实。单挑显示和改变现实的技术应该彻底改变从游戏到社交到色情的一切。尽管缺乏VR"杀手级应用"和AR应用程序的采用，但是industry is growing; they're expected to hit $209 billion by 2022, and an aggregate one billion users by 2020.
Yet there seems to be more AR news about
然而似乎有更多的AR新闻Bhad Bhabie than how it's altering our spending habits. And while VR is seeping into every industry to "increase empathy" and train employees, it's far from occupying a space in every living room, conference room, and treatment facility.
The stark contrast between investment and how users
投资与用户之间形成鲜明对比 actually use VR, MR, and AR begs the question: what should we expect in 2019? In short, I propose five things, or "need-to-knows":
- VR theme parks and location-based VR experiences are coming to a city near you (Or: the resurrection of laser tag!)
- XR's killer app will likely rely on --- not just leverage --- eye-tracking (Or: fighting foreign adversaries over fictional invaders with your eyes!)
- Expect increased VR hardware development and adoption (Or: Oculus and Playstation will set your limbs free!)
- Augmented reality ads are coming (Or: bringing the magic of QVC to your living room!)
- Enhancements to the AR/MR/VR creator's tool-belt (Or: don't watch porn while taking tests!)
Need-to-Know #1: VR theme parks and location-based VR experiences are coming to a city near you (Or: the resurrection of laser tag!)
Some of you may remember (but most won't because
有些人可能记得（但大多数人不会因为 BOY they flopped, hard), IMAX raised $50 million to open "VR Experience Centers" in major cities worldwide. They successfully opened in New York, L.A., Manchester, Bangkok, Shanghai, and Toronto, only to
他们失败了，IMAX筹集了5000万美元在全球主要城市开设"VR体验中心"。他们在纽约，洛杉矶，曼彻斯特，曼谷，上海和多伦多成功开业announce in December of 2018 that the company is shutting down its remaining locations.
Creating a centralized space for consumers to experience a new technology so that over time --- as the tech becomes more affordable and performant --- they'll bring it into their own home? Sounds like a recipe for success (see: arcades → PlayStation, drive-in theaters → Netflix, laser tag → MMOs etc). That,
为消费者创造一个集中的空间体验新技术，以便随着时间的推移 - 随着技术变得更加实惠和高效 - 他们会把它带到自己的家中？听起来像成功的秘诀（参见：拱廊→PlayStation，电影院→Netflix，激光标签→MMO等）。那， and the "location-based entertainment" market for VR experiences is
VR体验的"基于位置的娱乐"市场是expected to grow to $12 billion within the next five years.
So how'd they screw up? One theory is the basis behind creating the venue in the first place; the centers felt more like promotional vehicles for their core product --- that being IMAX theaters and movies --- and less like an immersive storytelling experience. They lacked focus, sometimes acting as a show floor for new VR technology instead of an entertainment destination.
那他们怎么搞砸了？一个理论是首先创建场地的基础;这些中心更像是他们核心产品的宣传工具 - 即IMAX影院和电影---而不像沉浸式的故事情节。他们缺乏专注，有时作为新VR技术的展示场所，而不是娱乐目的地。
So wouldn't it be better, then, if there was an experience where everything --- the story arc, the props, the equipment, even the waiting room --- is designed to transport you to an alien zoo, or an abandoned ship at the bottom of an ocean?
所以不会更好，那么，如果有经验，所有的东西 - 故事弧，道具，设备，甚至候车室 - 都是为了把你带到一个外星人的动物园，或者是一个废弃的动物园船在海底？
Enter: Dreamscape Immersive. The company, backed by IMAX (lol), AMC, Fox and Warner Bros, is aiming to do what IMAX couldn't. According to
It's tough to shake the feeling that you're doing more than stepping into a virtual reality experience. This feels like a journey. It's a thought-out, cohesive approach that pulls heavily from the lessons of modern-day theme park queue designs.
None of this is surprising when you consider
当你考虑时，这一切都不令人惊讶the video game industry is outpacing movies and music. These companies,
. These companies, according to PWC, are always trying to diversify "beyond the dominating content categories of gaming and video to find new opportunities, especially in enterprise VR apps or venue-based VR experiences."
So far, these things are mostly in California malls. Assuming they see more commercial success than IMAX, they'll start to expand. You may be wearing a headset and toting a computerized vest sooner than you think.
Need-to-Know #2: XR's killer app will likely rely on --- not just leverage --- eye-tracking (Or: fighting foreign adversaries over fictional invaders with your eyes!)
Foveated rendering. It's a fancy term for how VR headsets are finding computational efficiencies. Our brains already do this, to an extent. If our eyes are focused on our iPhones, for example, then the world around it melts away. Our peripheries become blurred as our brains focus on only the thing in front of us. If VR headsets could track where you're eyes are looking, they could lower the resolution of everything happening in your peripheral vision, effectively saving a ton of graphics rendering power.
From Road to VR
The new Vive Pro Eye and Microsoft's latest mixed reality headset, the
和微软最新的混合现实耳机，Hololens 2, does just this. Suddenly, eye tracking can be leveraged for foveated rendering, of course. But it also enables in-app controls (e.g. look down at a loot box just to open it) and analysis of user attention during training.
That part --- attention analysis --- is critical.
Think about it: the United States Military can create a virtual environment where adversaries are attacking from dozens of angles, using a barrage of tactics. They can put a headset on thousands of First Lieutenants, and train them to look for snipers, identify explosives, maintain fighter jets, assemble weapons and mitigate hundreds of risks, all from a conference room at Fort Campbell.
You probably haven't seen too many (or even one) Hololenses in the wild. But behind the iron curtain that is the United States defense department, Microsoft
你可能没有在野外见过太多（甚至一个）Hololenses。但在美国国防部门的幕后，微软struck a $480 million deal with the The Army.
with the The Army.
At CES, Lockheed Martin
在CES，洛克希德马丁demoed a flight simulator, aimed at augmenting the user's "physical flight stick and throttle controls with gaze tracking that can be used to activate the numerous subsystems within a fighter jet for a drone shoot-down mission."
Another company demoed a public speaking training app that used eye tracking to make sure you're focusing on your audience instead of the teleprompter. It even places you in a depressing windowless DoubleTree conference room (tacky carpeting and everything)!
From The Telegraph.
Those are two real examples that
这是两个真实的例子 actually already exist in the world. Imagine the possibilities: UX and CX (user and customer experience) professionals can test consumer attention and preference. Medical students can explore digital cadavers for passing grades before stepping into an OR. Hell, baristas can identify steam wands from the steam tips before risking burning themselves on real espresso machines.
In 2019, VR, due to eye tracking, will make great strides entering industries of all kinds as a B2B application; in healthcare, education, defense, aviation, advertising, e-commerce, retail, and more.
在2019年，由于眼动追踪，VR将作为B2B应用在进入各种行业方面取得重大进展;在医疗保健，教育，国防，航空，广告，电子商务，零售等。Analytics platforms already exist. This is just the beginning.
Need-to-Know #3: Expect increased VR hardware development and adoption (Or: Oculus and Playstation will set your limbs free!)
There was a pivotal moment in the development of VR when individuals could strap on a headset and successfully (i.e. without throwing up) view an immersive experience.
In other words, the fields of view were wide enough and latencies were low enough to come close to the human brain's preferences (which clock in at 180º for field of view and 7--15 milliseconds between the time a player moves their head and the time the player sees a new, corrected view of the scene).
Cool, but you're still confined to a chair, or tethered to a computer, or forced to use mysterious space ladles to get around.
This year, we break free.
Developers and manufacturers are hard at work creating things that will encourage movement, mobility, and interaction in VR. Take the
开发人员和制造商正在努力创造能够鼓励VR中的移动，移动性和交互的东西。拿走3D Rudder for Playstation VR. Sure, you're still confined to an armchair, but it's a step in the right direction (away from teleporting and toward physical movement).
There's the Oculus Quest, or what the company is calling the first "all-in-one gaming system built for virtual reality," coming out this year. That means no PC connectivity for computing power, rendering graphics, or internet connectivity. Which also means no wires. Which
，或者公司称之为第一个为虚拟现实构建的"一体化游戏系统"，今年即将推出。这意味着没有用于计算能力，渲染图形或互联网连接的PC连接。这也意味着没有电线。哪一个 also means more mobility!
You've even got fitness brands like
你甚至有健身品牌NordicTrack (exercise bikes) jumping into the VR game to encourage more movement and the continued use of specialized hardware that does much more than just complement VR experiences.
And you can't talk about tech in 2019 without mentioning 5G (apparently). To some, the infrastructure that supports 5G
如果不提及5G（显然），你就不能在2019年谈论技术。对某些人来说，支持5G的基础设施 is --- in a sense --- XR hardware. Faster connectivity and lowered latencies means more freedom to move, richer experiences without hardwired connections, etc, etc. I won't go too deep into the promises of and heavy hype over 5G here (as I've already
---在某种意义上--- XR硬件。更快的连接性和更低的延迟意味着更多的移动自由，更丰富的体验，没有硬连线连接等等。我不会在这里过分深入了解5G的承诺和大肆宣传（因为我已经done this extensively), but it'll very likely lead to a spike in VR, MR, and AR usage.
Need-to-Know #4: Augmented reality ads are coming (Or: bringing the magic of QVC to your living room!)
Note: if you're interested in learning more about AR, check out my
deep dive into the state of AR
So there you are, wearing your PJs, watching a Netflix original, sipping tea, scrolling through Twitter. Suddenly you see an ad for a coffee table. Twitter knows you've just moved to a new apartment, so you've been served ads like this since you created a Zillow account. Normally, it'd be easy to ignore. After all, you're not about to check the table's specs, bust out a tape measure, and use your precious brain power to imagine how that table looks next to your new couch.
But times they are a changin'. Snapchat's AR ads used to cost half a million dollars in 2017. Now, just about anyone can make an AR lens with Lens Studio (seriously, I've made several), and brands can
但是时代他们是一个变革'。 Snapchat的AR广告在2017年曾经花费了50万美元。现在，几乎任何人都可以使用Lens Studio制作AR镜头（严肃地说，我制作了几个），品牌可以advertise them for as little as $50.
Facebook is testing
Facebook正在测试AR ads in the news feed and in Messenger (e.g. Ray Ban advertises glasses to you; you allow access to your camera and voilà), and brands like the NBA, Sephora, and Wayfair are
在Messenger中（例如Ray Ban向你宣传眼镜;你允许访问你的相机和voilà），像NBA，丝芙兰和Wayfair这样的品牌already buying in. And as AR ads become cheaper to produce and success metrics continue to pour out (
。随着AR广告的制作成本越来越低，成功指标也在不断涌现（one that is particularly impressive: "what is stored, or encoded into memory is 70% higher for AR experiences"), consumers will start seeing coffee table ads accompanied by "check it out in AR," which is certainly more compelling than, "learn more."
Need-to-Know #5: Enhancements to the AR/MR/VR creator's toolbelt. (Or: don't watch porn while taking tests!)
In 2018, I
In 2018, I created a breakdown of every major AR development platforms, from Facebook's AR Studio and Amazon Sumerian to Apple's ARKit and Google's ARCore. To make things simple (and to prevent myself from going down a rabbit hole and rewriting the whole thing), know that these companies will continue pouring money into the advancement of these products. If they can encourage creators, developers, and brands to continue making AR content, they can find ways to monetize it (via app stores and advertising). And there's the Unreal Engines and Unitys of the world. They will continue to lead the pack in creating high-powered, cross platform VR and AR experiences.
，从Facebook的AR Studio和Amazon Sumerian到Apple的ARKit和Google的ARCore。为了简单起见（并防止自己陷入困境并重写整个事物），请知道这些公司将继续为这些产品的发展投入资金。如果他们可以鼓励创作者，开发者和品牌继续制作AR内容，他们可以找到通过应用商店和广告获利的方法。还有世界上的虚幻引擎和统一体。他们将继续领导创建高性能，跨平台的VR和AR体验。
All of these companies will also continue to integrate other products into their AR development products. Take Amazon Sumerian, for example. On the surface, it's an IDE for creating VR and AR experiences, designed mostly for training purposes. But with Amazon Lambda (their serverless computing platform), Amazon Lex (their chatbot platform), Amazon Polly (their voice AI), Amazon Rekognition (image and video analysis software) and other software platforms integrated, you can build a virtual assistant that is able to proctor an exam, and
所有这些公司还将继续将其他产品集成到其AR开发产品中。以亚马逊苏美尔为例。从表面上看，它是用于创建VR和AR体验的IDE，主要用于培训目的。但是通过Amazon Lambda（他们的无服务器计算平台），Amazon Lex（他们的聊天机器人平台），Amazon Polly（他们的语音AI），Amazon Rekognition（图像和视频分析软件）以及其他集成的软件平台，您可以构建一个虚拟助手，能够进行考试，以及scold students when they attempt to watch porn. Finally?
On the hardware side, you've got companies like GoPro making the production of high-quality 360º video
在硬件方面，你有像GoPro这样的公司制作高质量的360º视频relatively easy and affordable.
One More Note
I try and cover the state of XR at least once a year. It's ever-changing, and the buy-in from companies and people with deep pockets is real. That said, people --- as in the public --- don't
我尝试每年至少一次覆盖XR的状态。它不断变化，公司和资金雄厚的人的支持是真实的。也就是说，人们 - 就像公众一样 - 不这样做 really care that much. At least, not yet.
From Google Trends.
I mentioned this at the top, but the killer apps that justify the investment are yet to be seen. In theory, technologies that transport you to new worlds or "augment" your current one feel like winners. And maybe it's just a matter of time and tech before your dreams and fantasies are digitally overlayed before your eyes.
Admittedly, I'm still skeptical. Maybe humans don't actually want escapist virtual tech. Maybe the hype around augmented reality is just detracting from a more important conversation about digital wellbeing, accessible UI, and user privacy. Maybe the military regrets spending half a billion dollars on a headset that can only augment in a
不可否认，我仍然持怀疑态度。也许人类实际上并不想要逃避现实的虚拟技术。也许围绕增强现实的炒作只会减少关于数字福利，可访问用户界面和用户隐私的更重要的对话。也许军方感到遗憾的是花了5亿美元买了一部只能增加耳机的耳机52º field of view.
Skeptical or no, the companies that dominate every digital interaction you have --- from the hardware and apps you use (Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Samsung), to the ads you unwillingly see (Facebook, Snapchat, Google), to the infrastructure that connects us all using wireless (AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile) --- have an incentive to push XR to consumers, businesses, and the government.
持怀疑态度与否，这些公司主导着您所拥有的每一次数字互动 - 从您使用的硬件和应用程序（Apple，亚马逊，微软，三星）到您不情愿看到的广告（Facebook，Snapchat，Google），再到基础设施连接我们所有人使用无线（AT＆T，Verizon，T-Mobile）---有动力将XR推向消费者，企业和政府。
So, let's see how 2019 shakes out. I'm skeptical, yes, but I'm also excited to see what comes.
Serious thanks to ISL's own tech director
非常感谢ISL自己的技术总监Scott Donaldson and XR guru Donell Ellis.
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