AVRL Meeting Mar 2017

Thu 23rd Mar 2017 5:30pm – 7:30pm
UWA Monadelphous Integrated Learning Centre (upstairs)

Lisa Chu, the Program Manager for the HTC VIE Ecosystem, recently visited Western Australia to meet with groups working in Perth’s thriving VR/AR ecosystem. Over the course of a few days, Lisa attended a range of events across the city, and we were very lucky to have her come to UWA to share her expertise on HTC services and analytic trends in Asia’s Viveland arcades.

Lisa was particularly interested to hear questions from the range of independent researchers and groups working with these technologies across the university sector, and we had a lively discussion about the role of universities in supporting emerging virtual and augmented reality software applications for research and development.

Lisa used this opportunity to encourage staff and students to apply to the 2017 HTC ViveX accelerator internship. The internship program supports startups and provides them with education, investment and mentorship, currently through accelerator programs located in Beijing, San Francisco, Taipei, ShenZhen. Lisa discussed the growing need for developers working in the medical, health, engineering and cultural heritage sectors to complement the already strong representation in AR/VR softwares from the gaming and entertainment industry.

Lisa also demonstrated a pre-release of HTC’s custom hardware tracker, which lets users and developers turn any object into a virtual reality hardware accessory. The device (pictured) weighs just 8 ounces, and can connect to accessories via USB for button controls and power. It lasts for 6 hours on a charge, and can be mounted via a tripod-like screw at the bottom.

The HTC Vive event was a great opportunity to showcase local research and VR development, and to let staff conducting or planning VR projects across Perth’s universities know about the platform and services VIVE provides.