Home LATEST NEWS HIGH TECH Bringing virtual reality to life, a project for the metaverse

Bringing virtual reality to life, a project for the metaverse

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At the Las Vegas Technology Show (CES), many young shoots this week unveiled their innovations supposed to help build the metaverse, a parallel universe where human, augmented and virtual realities must merge.

The bodycon jacket features strips that stick to the skin, with sensors linked to a mobile app. Before putting on a virtual reality (VR, or VR, in english, for Virtual Reality), the user can choose the intensity of every sensation, from insect bites to blood flowing from a gunshot wound.

We want to give shape to the metaverse, with a second skin, which adds the sense of touch in virtual worlds.

A quote from José Fuertes, boss of the Spanish company Owo

The garment, which will be marketed for less than $ 575 at the end of the year, recalls the novel Ready Player One, where humanity lives, plays and studies in a parallel virtual society thanks to haptic devices.

This sci-fi horizon seems distant, especially considering that bandwidth is still too often reduced in many parts of the world, including California, if only for video calls.

But Facebook, recently renamed Meta, gave unprecedented impetus to the vast metaverse project when its boss, Mark Zuckerberg, decreed last year that it was the future of the Internet and announced colossal investments.

Many bricks are needed to make it emerge on a large scale, beyond existing pockets in video games, such as Roblox and Fortnite.

Glasses will have to become comfortable and affordable, and immersive use cases will have to multiply.

The question of interoperability also arises, in order to be able to move from one virtual world to another, which is not yet possible.

I am a huge fan of augmented reality and virtual reality, but the equipment is not up to date. I don’t think there is anything exciting going on for 5 or 10 years, notes Paddy Cosgrave, boss of the Web Summit, a European technology fair.

The metaverse on a roll

Nothing can stop the metaverse, says Edo Segal, founder of TouchCast, an event and VR specialist.

He launched a collaborative VR platform on Wednesday for companies, which will be able to create their address there by .metaverse, like .com on the Web. But their domains will be registered on the blockchain (blockchain), and not on servers.

In 1999, it was hard to believe that we were going to buy things online, enthuses Mr. Segal. Today, we are witnessing the migration from web 2.0 to web 3.0, the decentralized Internet.

A woman uses a virtual reality headset and controllers

The Oculus Quest 2 in action

Photo: Sonny Costin / Oculus from Facebook

The pandemic has already popularized VR a bit. In the fourth quarter of 2020, 1 million copies of the Quest 2 headset from Oculus (Meta) were sold worldwide, according to data analysis site Statista.

Ever more realistic avatars

Since the health restrictions, Takuma Iwasa spends his weekends on VRChat, a platform where avatars can create 3D worlds and spend time chatting and hosting parties.

At the end of 2020, the young Japanese entrepreneur decided to design suitable equipment: sensors to attach to his chest and legs to make his avatar’s movements more faithful, a case that gives the sensation of temperature and a microphone that isolates from the real world.

Above all, its young shoot, Shiftall (Panasonic), is releasing VR glasses that are lighter and more sophisticated than current models in the spring.

Ready Player One, the characters have combinations with all the integrated systems. But for now you have to wear them separately, like a cyborg “,” text “:” In Ready Player One, the characters have suits with all the integrated systems. But for now you have to wear them separately, like a cyborg “}}”>In Ready Player One, the characters have combinations with all the integrated systems. But for now, you have to wear them separately, like a cyborg, he has fun by showing dance movements that his avatar, a female manga character, reproduces on the screen.

The young Israeli startup Wearable Devices is working on a bracelet that detects the electrical signals sent by the brain to the hand: the user can control connected objects with a snap of the fingers.

This function could in particular make it possible, in the future, to control the display on augmented reality glasses, without taking out our smart phones.

We’re going to test a lot of crazy things, a bit like the first planes and cars.

A quote from Marc Carrel-Billiard, Head of Innovation at Accenture

But as the metaverse gains ground, we will also find the pitfalls of society, from harassment to disinformation, according to him.

We will have to educate people about the risks, for example that we project a false reality in your glasses, raises Marc Carrel-Billiard.

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