Is Face, Eye & Body Tracking the Future of VR?

Blog by John Woods, News Editor at XR Today

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Published: March 19, 2021

John Woods XR Today

John Woods

It’s been another interesting seven days in the world of enterprise XR, with many sources suggesting that face and eye-tracking tech is on the rise in a big way.

XR Today started the week with the news leading virtual reality developer, HTC VIVE, just launched its latest line of next-generation facial and body trackers.

These new trackers offer many new and exciting updates to the original models, including up to 75% increase in battery life and a 15% reduction in weight for added portability, flexibility, and comfort when using for extended periods.

The devices also also deliver cutting-edge technology that will allow businesses to leverage how customers move, view, and engage with products within their immersive environments.

As well as enhancing the quality and realism of immersive experiences for end-users, these trackers enable organizations to gather valuable metrics on customer behaviors and experiences in both virtual and mixed realities.

Elsewhere, leading XR for enterprise hardware developers, Varjo, also mentioned the importance of eye-tracking tech on the future of XR in the enterprise world.

During her keynote presentation at the VRARA Enterprise Forum earlier this week, Head of Design and Research at Varjo, Hannah Nilson, explained how facial tracking in mixed reality is transforming how businesses engage with customers in 2021 and beyond.

Varjo makes no secret of the fact that its flagship XR-3 and VR-3 headsets currently offer the market’s most advanced industrial-strength eye-tracking capabilities. What’s more, this feature arguably places them above other key figures in this space like Microsoft and Magic Leap.

During the presentation, Nilson explained how Varjo’s powerful eye-tracking features could drastically improve businesses’ consumer research processes by granting them access to incredibly detailed and highly valuable real-time analytics.

With this data, Nilson explained that businesses can now much more successfully gauge how customers view their products and what part of the product design best drives conversions and buying decisions.

In addition to the above, a recent podcast by The Information with Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, earlier this month confirmed that Oculus also has big plans for facial tracking in the future.

During the interview, Zuckerberg states that Oculus has “product teams spun up now working on the next few generations of virtual reality and what Quest 3 and 4 are gonna look like.”

“One of the things I’m really excited about for future versions is getting eye tracking and face tracking in, because if you’re really excited about social presence, you want to make sure the device has all the sensors to really…animate realistic avatars so you can communicate well”

Though there was little mention from Zuckerberg of how organizations could use these tracking tools to their advantage, we’re almost certain Facebook will find many ways to leverage this tool into its Oculus for Business offering in the future.

That’s all for now, but remember to check in again at the same time next week for another discussion on the biggest trends arising from the XR for enterprise space! 

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