Creating the most immersive XR experiences requires more than just the best visuals or spatial audio technologies. To respond to user actions in real-time, XR devices, such as VR headsets and AR smart glasses, need to be able to track and understand the right information.
Eye and hand tracking technologies embedded into wearable devices, or delivered through external sensors, provide the feedback that applications need to optimize the immersive experience for each user. With eye-tracking solutions, software can be designed to effectively render the content users are viewing according to their specific needs, reducing bandwidth use and improving clarity.
With hand-tracking capabilities, innovators can remove the need for teams to utilize external controllers and devices when interacting with digital content. Both of these innovations allow for a more immersive and realistic XR experience. So, which companies are paving the way for the next generation of tracking? Here are just some of the vendors worth watching.
- Spectre XR
- Contact CI
- HTC VIVE
Dedicated to transforming the way users share valuable data with XR solutions and applications, UltraLeap has produced a host of powerful technologies for the hand and eye tracking sector. With Ultraleap’s hand-tracking accessories, companies can rapidly add a 5th-generation hand tracking system, complete with a unified neural network straight to their existing XR devices.
The Ultraleap Gemini hand-tracking platform provides support for both Augmented and Virtual Reality solutions, allowing for more immersive, interactive, and realistic experiences. The solution connects with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR2 platform too, bringing touchless capabilities to self-service solutions, kiosks, and a variety of other devices. Ultraleap is even investing in the area of mid-air haptics, for unique forms of feedback.
Latest UltraLeap News
Focusing on the eye-tracking landscape, Tobii is on a mission to improve the way people interact with computing technology. The Swedish company has produced a number of eye-tracking solutions, including the Tobii Pro Glasses 3. This wearable headset comes with a wide field of view, surround sound, and eye-tracking capabilities already built-in.
Tobii also produces screen-based eye-trackers, capable of capturing gaze data at speeds of up to 1200HZ. Options range from the Tobii Pro Nano and Spark systems to Tobii Pro Spectrum and Fusion. Companies can also leverage a huge selection of accessories from Tobii’s store, such as motion capture systems, protective lenses, and mobile testing accessories for a range of use cases.
Latest Tobii News
Exploring the evolving landscape of haptic feedback, Manus is a dedicated XR company, experimenting with the use of intelligent tracking systems and sensors. The company focuses primarily on wearable devices, designed to capture information about user movement, and provide useful feedback, for immersive experiences.
Manus’s product portfolio includes solution like the Quantum Metagloves, with next-level high-fidelity finger tracking provided through intelligent drift-free sensors. The company also produces the “Pro Tracker” solution for SteamVR, which supports virtual display tracking, and allows developers to translate the movements of their hands and bodies into a virtual environment. The Pro Tracker can even examine surfaces alongside physical human movement.
Latest Manus News
The Spectre XR company focuses on the development and design of VR games and apps, as well as fully immersive AR and Mixed Reality experiences for a host of business needs. The company’s sensor and tracking technology comes in the form of the “OctoXR” Unity game engine. This low-code plugin enables users to create realistic, physics-based hand interactions for applications.
With OctoXR, users gain access to an all-in-one hand tracking system, with a library of interaction components included. The solutions are scalable, composable and modular, so they can be integrated into an existing XR architecture, or used on a standalone basis. Users can take advantage of things like distance grabbing with raycasting, and kinematic grabbing capabilities.
Latest Spectre XR News
Smart glasses vendor, Rokid, produces intelligent wearables intended to bring digital content into the real world, through a flexible display. The next-gen glasses come with tracking capabilities built-in, allowing users to control applications and software using gestures and movement. Products like the Rokid Max also feature a 215” screen size, 120 hz refresh rate, and adjustable brightness.
With a combination of professional acoustics and intelligent tracking technology, Rokid’s headsets support natural immersion in the augmented reality space. Rokid also has its own developer platform, where innovators can take advantage of the company’s investments in tracking technology and AR application creation, to build their own unique experiences.
Latest Rokid News
Announcing its most recent development at CES 2023, Contact CI is a haptic-focused startup, concentrating on the world of eye and motion tracking. The company’s Maestro EP solution is a multi-force haptic enterprise system, for simulation VR applications. With Maestro, companies can leverage a range of hand-tracking capabilities and experiences.
The software comes with Exotendon force feedback solutions, to help deliver immersive touch-based experiences to customers through haptic gloves. The tracking-system agnostic technology can also integrate with virtually any setup. Contact CI also has its own Unity and Unreal SDKs, which make it easier to add haptics to existing or new content.
Latest Contact CI News
Currently still in the early stages of development, Emerge is an XR software development company, committed to creating straightforward applications for businesses and consumers. The initial product developed by Emerge is the Wave-1 solution, an ultrasound-powered tabletop device created to bring touch and haptic feedback into the metaverse.
Designed to accommodate the Quest VR ecosystem, with the plan to implement support for new devices in the future, the Emerge solution allows users to physically feel what they see in virtual reality. The Emerge Wave-1 beamforms create a forcefield which allow users to interact with virtual content like never before.
Latest Emerge News
Known to most simply as “VIVE”, HTC VIVE produces a number of solutions for the XR landscape, including the Viverse platform for content creation, and a variety of wearable devices. The VIVE Tracker, an accessory created for the extended reality space, is the solution offered by the company for hand and motion tracking requirements.
The VR tracker technology can capture full-body movement, and convey crucial information back to a range of applications and devices. The solution allows developers in the XR space to eliminate the need for controllers in virtual reality, with a lightweight alternative. The solution can even be used for the development of new applications and programs in VR.
Latest HTC VIVE News
Technology vendor OpenBCI produces a variety of headsets, sensors and electrodes designed for the biosensing landscape. The company is exploring the transforming landscape of brain computer interfacing and neurofeedback, with unique wearable devices, like electrode caps and headbands. The company also produces solutions for tracking and sensing which can integrate with existing headsets on the VR and XR market, such as the Varjo XR-3.
Open BCI’s technologies are designed to capture more than just hand and eye movements, with the ability to detect feedback and electrical signals from the human brain. The company is even currently working with educators and medical professionals on the development of new research within the biofeedback landscape.
Latest OpenBCI News