MWC 2022: HTC presents Metaverse vision and new products
- MWC 2022 announcements added
Update February 28, 2022:
During the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, HTC CEO Cher Wang explains the vision of the Viverse metaverse and introduces a number of new or updated products:
- Vive Browser: VR-based web browser
- Vive Connect: a "portal" to the Vive
- Vive Guardian for Vive Flow: via the software, teachers:or parents can control what content young people see in the goggles.
- Vive Avatar: tool for cross-service avatar creation according to VRM standards.
"Viverse is our version of the metaverse; an immersive, boundless universe of fantastic new experiences, and a seamless gateway to other universes in collaboration with our partners from the time you wake up in the morning until the time you go to sleep at night," HTC writes.
HTC also announced a collaboration with German VR startup Holoride to bring VR into cars. In the local multiplayer game Yullbe Go at Europa Park, five players can compete simultaneously with Vive Focus 3.
Original article dated February 25, 2022:
In the VR revival since 2015, HTC has been there from the beginning. Of course, the company also has a Metaverse vision, which it now introduces as "Viverse."
With the first Vive glasses and accessories like the Vive wireless adapter and various Vive trackers, HTC shaped the first years of virtual reality and was one of the leading companies.
However, things have not been going well lately: The Cosmos VR series could not repeat the success of the predecessor headsets, the rescue attempt via Vive Pro 2 did not work out, at least in the consumer segment, and the actually bold VR glasses Vive Flow are still looking for a target group.
With the Vive Focus 3, however, HTC showed that it can continue to build strong VR hardware and also has innovations in its lineup with accessories like the wrist tracker for Focus 3.
Viverse: How much color does man need?
With Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg putting the XR industry on Metaverse duty last fall, it goes without saying that HTC needs to show a Metaverse vision of its own: The "Viverse" is a very colorful future concept where VR, AR, AI, 5G and NFTs converge.
At some points, HTC integrates scenes from its own VR meeting software Vivesync and from the VR event environment Enagage, both of which are part of the Vive Business Suite. In part, then, the video outlines realistic scenarios. These can be recognized by the fact that they visually lag behind the other ideas.
Far-off visions of the future are … far away
Many scenes from the video, however, are the product of fantasy. And they raise similar questions to Meta's Metaverse presentation in the fall, especially about the technology that makes it all possible, such as photo-realistic avatars or wine glass tracking. Neither is impossible, but they are enormously complex and costly.
In my view, the more important questions therefore arise at the societal level: Do people even want this metaverse vision, which encompasses all areas of life, should it one day actually be feasible? Are the visions shown in the video worth the technical effort - for developers and users?
Or should the XR industry rather focus its messaging on already possible or soon-to-be possible use cases where the technology meaningfully complements and enhances people's lives?
Read more about the Metaverse:
- Metaverse Avatars: Ready Player Me reaches milestone
- Virtual travel: The Expedia CEO and the Fear of the Metaverse
- Meta’s big Metaverse concert was a costly disaster