The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2024 wrapped up last week.
While the event is known for showcasing innovative products for the consumer space, this year, the enterprise XR space took the event by storm, with firms like Sony, NVIDIA, XREAL, Qualcomm, PIXO VR, and Dimension X taking the stage to highlight the latest in spatial computing innovation.
The XR space is unique due to the cross-over between consumer devices and enterprise adoption. Many spatial computing technologies are boosted by innovation between various technology fields, from enterprise to consumer to military. At CES 2024, this symbiotic relationship was on the show with new digital solutions that may alter the future of work and life.
Outside of XR, the event also brought countless upcoming products to the public eye, but let’s look at some of the XR highlights.
PIXO VR and Dimension X Develop Enterprise-Ready Content Creation Platform
At CES 2024, PIXO VR and Dimension X announced a partnership to continue the growth of Bonfire, a low-code XR content creation suite for enterprise end-users.
The move sees Bonfire integrate into the PIXO platform to drive adoption of Dimension X’s low-code suite via PIXO’s online platform for enterprise XR customers.
The PIXO platform allows enterprises to access various AR/VR/MR spatial computing applications to satisfy training needs.
Now with Dimension X joining the platform, PIXO’s extensive user base – which includes Ford, Bosch, Saudi Aramco and General Dynamics – can create bespoke Bonfire training experiences.
Sean Hurwitz, Founder & CEO of PIXO VR added:
PIXO’s goals are to continue to break down enterprises’ barriers to offering the most effective training available. Together with Dimension X, we are delivering an enterprise content builder to remove what we have experienced as one of the biggest barriers to the adoption of VR/AR/MR in enterprise: creating relevant, customizable content.
Bonfire includes a library of reusable, customizable 3D elements that enterprise clients can leverage with ease to create bespoke training exercises to match what can be incredibly niche training procedures – with the firms stating how the platform can save up to 50 per cent in time and capital when developing interactive digital training solutions.
Scott Robertson, CEO of Dimension X, also added:
Both Dimension X and PIXO share a focus on democratizing highly scalable, immersive experiences. We made Bonfire to empower content creators, and are excited to help PIXO integrate Bonfire onto their Platform to make customized VR/AR/MR available to all companies, with faster content creation timelines and enhanced learning effectiveness beyond what traditional training methods can achieve.
Phantom Haptic Gloves Gains “Best of Innovation” Award
CES highlights some of its best each year with various innovation awards and honours.
CES 2024’s list of awarded firms covers an incredibly vast range of technologies. A notable XR firm which scored big at the CES awards was Phantom.
The firm received the event’s “Best of Innovation” award for its haptic feedback glove, a growing area of interest for many in the XR space following a lull in interest.
The wrist-worn product leverages a ring-based system that distributes haptic feedback at a granular level without excessive hardware.
Phantom notes that its lightweight haptic solution is ready for professionals such as engineers working on a spatial computing/XR headset, AR smart glasses, or a smartphone device.
Pimax Awarded CES Innovation Honouree Award
Emerging headset Primax is gaining worldwide recognition for its incredibly high-quality and feature-rich headsets. Most recently, at CES 2024, the firm joined an honourees list of the event’s most innovative firms for its presence at this year’s event – notably, the firm was the only XR headset vendor awarded.
At the event, Primax showcased its Crystal VR headset, which is equipped with a 60G AirLink wireless module that secures users with high-speed data transmission and low-latency streaming.
The module uses 60G millimetre wave (mmWave) technology to secure this outcome and enhance VR content streaming without additional wires.
Moreover, Primax provided an invitation-only showcase for its 12K-EVTo (Engineering Verification Test Zero) prototype headset, which the firm is explicitly designing for industrial use cases. The prototype headset presents new competition to the enterprise XR hardware marketplace with “unmatched resolution and expansive field of view.”
XREAL Unveil XREAL Air 2 Ultra AR Glasses
XREAL recently presented its new Air 2 Ultra product at CES. The company is positioning the Air 2 Ultra as an affordable option for entering the spatial computing market.
XREAL aims to compete with companies like Apple and Meta by offering a low-cost AR/MR device. The Air 2 Ultra is available for pre-order for $699, with shipping in March.
Chi Xu, the Founder and CEO of XREAL, said:
With XREAL Air 2 Ultra we’re empowering developers around the world by providing an affordable and lightweight solution that allows them to jump into the exciting world of spatial computing and create the next generation of mixed reality experiences.
XREAL has claimed to have shipped around 350,000 pairs of AR glasses since the company was founded in 2017. According to market research firm IDC, XREAL dominated the market in Q3 last year, accounting for 51% of all AR glasses shipped.
The XREAL Air 2 Ultra has highly competitive AR smart glasses features at an equally competitive price. The lightweight – 80-gram – device aims to become a ubiquitous tool that can be worn for extended periods, providing immersive visuals for various use cases, including work, entertainment, and fitness.
Xu has explained that the XREAL Air 2 Ultra features advanced spatial computing technology in a sleeker, more comfortable form factor than its predecessor, ready to be worn all day and accessible to all players in the XR development ecosystem, unlike competing brands.
The XREAL Air 2 Ultra boasts six degrees of freedom (6DoF) through dual 3D environment sensors, a full HD display for each eye, a 52° field-of-view (FOV), 42 pixels per degree (PPD), and a 120Hz refresh rate. The device is also certified by TÜV Rheinland for colour accuracy, eye comfort, low blue light emissions, and flicker-free usage. The device is also equipped with 3D environment sensors with computer vision capabilities.
NVIDIA Omniverse to Boost Digital Twin Development
NVIDIA is developing Omniverse, a robust XR framework to help AR/VR/MR solution providers create immersive workplace applications, and at CES 2023 this week, NVIDIA announced several new project partners to launch the Omniverse platform to new levels of usability for automotive clients.
NVIDIA is collaborating with ITONE, Brickland, Configit, Katana Studio, WPP ZeroLight, and Lotus to achieve this enterprise-facing vision.
This move enables NVIDIA to assist automotive companies in utilizing XR development tools to match auto industry use cases, particularly customer experience and auto-configuration operations. The company emphasizes how its recently optimized hardware, software, and partner ecosystem can also add value to automotive-focused original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and agencies.
OEM workers can use Omniverse to work on digital equipment or product twin. With the latest update, the company provides a streamlined route that simplifies OEM access and requires fewer manual setup procedures.
RealWear Begins Shipping ‘World’s Most Advanced’ Smart Glasses
RealWear has recently launched the Navigator Z1 smart glasses, considered the world’s most advanced and intrinsically safe (IS) head-mounted wearable device. These smart glasses operate on an Android 12 operating system and are compatible with several integrated workplace applications, including immersive collaboration apps.
Moreover, the RealWear Navigator Z1 has received ATEX and IECEx IS certification, which makes it suitable for use in hazardous zones. Due to its certification, it has become quite popular in the oil and gas industry, resulting in substantial pre-orders from over a dozen countries.
Dr Chris Parkinson, RealWear’s Co-Founder and CEO, said:
Worker safety and productivity must not be mutually exclusive. With so many consumer-grade gadgets being hyped to industry, we have delivered something truly modern and in high demand for critical work procedures. With certification, we’re able to fulfil our strong pre-order backlog. Navigator Z1 is laying the groundwork for an AI-enabled workforce in hazardous industries.
Sony Teases XR Headset
Sony has announced the development of a new XR headset as part of an “immersive spatial content creation system.” Sony unveiled the new XR system at the CES event, and the system comes with a high-quality 4K OLED Microdisplays XR head-mounted display and a video see-through function.
Additionally, the system includes a pair of controllers optimized for intuitive interaction with 3D objects and precise pointing. The product is expected to be released later this year, and Sony plans to provide more information about its specifications and launch dates later.
Cedrik Neike, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and CEO of Siemens Digital Industries, said:
Siemens is partnering with Sony to enable immersive engineering, a critical building block for the industrial metaverse. Together, we are creating an environment where it will be possible to experience the realities of physics without the bounds of time to profoundly improve how our customers work and collaborate.
The device is equipped with the latest XR processor, the Snapdragon XR2+ Gen 2 Platform, which Qualcomm designs. This processor powers the 4K OLED Microdisplays and provides user and space tracking features, ensuring the user’s XR experiences are immersive and seamless. Moreover, Sony collaborated with Siemens and Qualcomm to create this new XR system.
Wanda Parisien is a computing expert who navigates the vast landscape of hardware and software. With a focus on computer technology, software development, and industry trends, Wanda delivers informative content, tutorials, and analyses to keep readers updated on the latest in the world of computing.