HTC is saying a new wrist-based controller for its Vive Focus 3 digital actuality headset. The wi-fi Vive Wrist Tracker matches like a watch round a person’s arm, monitoring the orientation and place from hand to elbow. It’s designed to enhance the business-focused headset’s present controllers, significantly for simulation and coaching experiences the place physique place is vital. It’s additionally a part of a bigger suite of recent options HTC revealed at CES, together with a 5G-powered VR expertise.
The Wrist Tracker seems a lot like a small, gentle, and specialised model of the Vive Tracker machine HTC debuted in 2017. It contains a strap and a toggle indicating whether or not the tracker must be on a left or proper arm, however in contrast to the multi-buttoned Vive Focus 3 controllers, it’s designed to mainly connect with the headset wirelessly and transmit motion knowledge, with out the necessity for the headset’s cameras to see it. (You also can connect it to inanimate objects.) The VR coaching firm Flaim describes utilizing it to make sure that individuals have been holding a digital hearth extinguisher within the right place — one thing you couldn’t essentially decide with a handheld controller alone — and Taser maker Axon will apparently combine it into the corporate’s VR coaching system.
While HTC didn’t record a value for the tracker, it’s going to launch within the first quarter of 2022. Like the Vive Tracker and the $1,300 Vive Focus 3, it’s not designed for shoppers, and it will likely be Most worthy with experiences which can be designed particularly to make the most of it. But it’s additionally one of many much less unique equipment HTC has developed — a class that features a sophisticated lip monitoring machine.
HTC likewise introduced the launch of what it’s calling a “portable, private 5G experience” in partnership with Lumen Technologies. It’s an software that’s run on the Vive Focus 3 however offloads many of the precise knowledge processing to a distant pc and streams it by means of a non-public 5G system through Lumen. Mobile VR is a long-standing potential use case for 5G networks since experiences can require a lot of computational energy delivered with low latency to headsets — though, to this point, it hasn’t been transformational within the house.
At CES, the corporate additionally introduced a charging case and an adjunct for charging a number of batteries at a time, aimed toward location-based leisure suppliers like arcades that wish to shortly swap out batteries for a number of headsets. Location-based leisure suppliers have used wired HTC headsets for a while, however the Vive Focus 3 guarantees to be extra handy, significantly after a sequence of software program updates final 12 months.