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AR/VR Updates from Unite and Oculus Connect October 3, 2019

AR/VR Updates from Unite and Oculus Connect

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Scott Doxey

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Last week was a crazy week for the world of AR and VR. Unite Copenhagen 2019 began on Monday and Oculus Connect 6 kicked off Wednesday. Both events announced some impressive features for Unity and the Oculus Quest, respectively. Let’s dive into some of the notable features for the world of AR and VR.

Unite Copenhagen 2019

Mixed and Augmented Reality Studio (MARS)

MARS is a platform that sits on top of the already amazing AR Foundation package, a package that makes it easy to build AR experiences that work on both iOS and Android. MARS makes it easy to author directly in the editor, rather than needing to build and test on devices. This is enabled by offering a simulation environment directly in the editor that allows you to build and test experiences without needing to build to device. They also announced future support for other devices like the Magic Leap and the Hololens 2.

Oculus Connect 6

Hand Tracking on Oculus Quest - early 2020

This one is really exciting! Oculus will be pushing an update to the Oculus Quest in early 2020 that will allow games to track hands without any additional hardware similar to the Leap Motion. The interactions appear to be similar to the interactions found on the Hololens 2 where you can press buttons and pinch objects to scale or move.

I’ve personally been waiting on this feature since the Quest originally launched earlier this year. In an update in November of this year, owners of the Oculus Quest will be able to connect their Oculus Quest to their PC using the supplied USB-C cable and use it to play games only available on the Rift or Rift S platform. This should also allow for development directly on the Quest, which previously required building and pushing to the device, which in some cases can result in a disrupted workflow.


These updates are exciting for both consumers and developers alike. MARS is going to help streamline the creation of AR experiences, Oculus hand tracking is going to make VR more immersive without needing additional hardware, and the Oculus Link will open up more opportunities for cross-platform apps.


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