Google held its annual developer conference Google IO yesterday. One of the highlights of the event was the developments related to the Virtual Reality (VR) platform Daydream. The best selling smartphones Samsung S8 and S8 Plus will both receive support for Daydream VR in 2017.
LG’s yet-to-be-released successor to LG V20 will also support Daydream.
Daydream also works as a standalone VR platform and works fine with just a compatible VR headset. Hence, there’s no need to pair a phone with it if one is interested in the headset only. Google has partnered with HTC and Lenovo to design and develop the standalone headsets. It’s interesting to note that HTC already manufacturers its own HTC Vive VR headset. Similarly, Samsung sells the in-house developed Gear VR headset. The question is whether HTC’s and Samsung’s partnership with Google will cannibalise Vive sales and Gear VR sales? Samsung most likely thinks that boosting Samsung S8 and S8 Plus sales is more important than defending the market share of a headset.
Augmented Reality (AR)
VR isn’t the only technology that Google is working on. The related AR tech also develops through the Tango platform. A new type of AR application is Visual Positioning Service (VPS). It’s a positioning system that’s more accurate than the big brother GPS, but that’s more suitable for shorter distances. The precision is a few centimetres as opposed to around 8 metres for the more accurate GPS variants. Where would one benefit from VPS precision? In store guidance and tracking is and obvious application of VPS.