HTC VIVE Teases New XR Production Device

Rory Greener

The popular headset vendor's latest device aims to stream extended reality (XR) production workflows

HTC VIVE Valve Index
HTC VIVE Teases New XR Production Device

Last Friday, extended reality (XR) firm HTC VIVE teased fans with an image of an unidentified product.

A Twitter post by the Taiwanese firm, which designs products such as the Flow, Focus 3, and Pro 2 headsets, revealed a small external computing box designed for motion tracking devices.

The elusive tweet does not disclose any info on the product but indicates a few apparent key elements.

Notably, the front display shows an active connection to three VIVE trackers and four SteamVR tracking base stations for recording the full-body motion of users.

Additionally, the device contains audiovisual outputs and a touchscreen display, which tracks a Timecode and Genlock, features used in a media production pipeline to sync audio and visuals.

It also suggests that the device streamlines real-time 3D (RT3D) animation production times by autonomously syncing motion-tracked actors to audio, visuals, or immersive content.

The firm has not confirmed a release window or any further details, but, HTC VIVE guarantees that answers are coming soon.

HTC VIVE Motion Trackers

Last March, the Taoyuan City-based firm released the third iteration of the VIVE Tracker following the original 2017 version. The latest release enhances performance and flexibility by increasing the battery life by 75 percent and reducing weight by 15 percent, among other updates.

Additionally, VIVE trackers are hardware-agnostic, meaning they can share a connection with other brands’ tracking devices. For example, the VIVE Tracker 3.0 can connect to Steam VR tracking stations and the Valve Index virtual reality (VR) headset.

The Steam trackers also appear on the display of the recently teased device, according to reports.

HTC VIVE released a facial tracking device in March last year, which seamlessly tracks up to 38 facial movements to detect areas such as the lips, jaw, teeth, tongue, and cheeks to simulate real-life expressions for digital avatars.

At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, HTC VIVE debuted a lightweight hand-tracking device purpose-built for the VIVE Focus 3 VR headset. HTC VIVE explained how the wrist-based device replaces classic Focus 3 controllers during the CES event.

The wrist device is significantly smaller than the Focus 3 controller and allows users to navigate immersive environments without using button-based inputs. HTC VIVE has not confirmed the wrist devices release date but suggests it will debut in the first quarter of 2022 for approximately $155 USD.

 

 


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