Tim Cook is a man of honor, Samsung Quest Pro and GPT-4 launch
Our weekly recap: Tim Cook finally seems to be putting his money where his mouth is when it comes to AR, while Samsung could counter Apple’s mixed reality launch with a Quest Pro-like device.
Tim Cook makes it happen
Since 2016, Apple CEO Tim Cook has been telling us all about how great and awesome the future of augmented reality will be. The only thing is, even though research and development has been going on in the background for years, Apple hasn’t shown off much, aside from a few smartphone gimmicks.
Now a report in the Financial Times reveals why it’s taking so long. And the reason isn’t surprising: It’s an internal dispute between Apple’s aesthetes, who don’t want to tarnish the company’s image with a clunky headset, and the business pragmatists in the operations department.
Apple CEO Tim Cook is said to be on the side of the latter, which is why the Apple headset will indeed be released this year. The most likely introduction date is still Apple’s WWDC developer conference in June.
Samsung also makes an XR headset
Samsung’s example shows that Apple could revitalize the XR market: The South Korean Galaxy aficionado is said to be building an XR headset similar to the Quest Pro, which will be unveiled this fall – presumably just in time to have an answer to Apple’s possible XR push. The headset could incorporate Google’s Iris know-how and a new Qualcomm chip.
In the fall, the Quest 3, which already appears in the Companion app, would join the illustrious ranks of mixed reality headsets, i.e. VR headsets with a focus on camera AR applications.
Let’s hope the devices are more successful than the Quest Pro, which had to be slashed by about 30 percent just four months after its launch. I wonder if Meta CEO Zuckerberg already knows what competition to expect this fall.
Create and view NeRF’s in a VR headset
NeRFs are an AI-powered rendering technique that can render the real world in high quality 3D and XR with relatively little effort. Especially in XR, it is considered an important graphics technology of the future.
With free software, you can create your own NeRFs and view them with VR headsets. Learn how to do this in our NeRF for VR guide.
Sony wants to top PSVR 1 with PSVR 2
Sounds good at first: Sony aims to surpass the roughly five million sales of Playstation VR 1 with Playstation VR 2 and sees “good chances” according to Sony’s CFO Hiroki Totoki. Totoki is optimistic about VR and believes that the technology could become the biggest growth market in the media and entertainment sector in the coming years (which doesn’t mean much in relative terms, but that’s another topic).
On second reading, the statement could also be evaluated more critically: Is it enough that PSVR 2 only has a “good chance” of beating PSVR 1? Or wouldn’t Playstation VR 2 actually have to significantly outperform Sony’s first VR headset to advance VR gaming overall?
Sony’s first VR headset got off to a good start, but eventually lost good software and thus its relevance. A similar or slightly better performance with the PSVR 2 would probably not move the market forward significantly. The PC VR market has also been stagnant for years and may even be in slight decline.
Anyway, Sony’s latest VR headset has a long tradition of immersion at the Japanese tech company – starting with the Walkman.
Is GPT-4 just around the corner?
Microsoft will introduce GPT-4 next week, says Microsoft Germany’s CTO – and the model will be multimodal, i.e. able to process video or, say, audio in addition to text. However, this does not mean that GPT-4 will be able to generate video in addition to text. It is more likely that GPT-4 will be able to write text to videos or take text from videos and process it contextually, i.e. understand different media as input besides text.
Read more about the latest GPT-4 rumors and more AI news at THE DECODER.
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