Feeling Virtual Reality
Many companies are trying their hand at virtual reality via headsets that allow users to see into new worlds. Some others, such as Orion, are developing systems to allow for more realistic interactions with the worlds they're seeing.
But Luis Castillo, founder and CEO of NeuroDigital Technology, decided to approach virtual reality through a different sense.
Gloveone is a virtual reality glove that was fully funded through Kickstarter in July of 2015. Up until its debut, most developments in VR have been geared towards headsets that create a virtual reality around your sense of sight.
If you have tried on a headset such as the Oculus Rift or the Samsung Gear VR, what's the first thing you try to do as soon as you put it on? Reaching your arms out and grasping for the virtual objects or scene that is presented to you visually, right? Unfortunately, you're just waving through the air, not able to grasp these objects.
But that may be changing. Gloveone is making it possible to feel the VR world you reach for.
Gloveone is enabling users to actually feel a variety of sensations such as the heat from a fire or drops of falling rain, as well as the feeling the weight of objects and the material they're made of.
A VR space is projected onto a monitor and from there you are free to interact and navigate throughout this space with the haptic feedback gloves.
For example, if you are looking at a virtual baseball on the monitor, Gloveone will allow you to feel the weight and shape of it and even throw the baseball! How might this be possible, you ask?
Sensors and Haptic Feedback
Gloveone tracks your hands and individual finger motions using several inertial motion units (IMUs) per glove. The IMU sensors are accompanied with 10 vibrotactile actuators located on the palms and fingertips of the gloves that provide haptic feedback. Each actuator is able to vibrate at different frequencies and intensities, which provides a realistic sensation and experience.
Additionally, you won't have to worry about having to recharge these every use. The Gloveone comes with a long life Li-Po battery for extended use.
Gloveone communicates with a chosen VR platform via low latency Bluetooth 4.0 or ultra-low latency via USB. Gloveone was designed to be as compatible as could be; virtually any system that incorporates a tracking system into their platform will be able to use Gloveone to track in real time. Systems such as the PlayStation Move, Microsoft Kinect, or Open Source Virtual Reality (OSVR) will be able to interact with the Gloveone in VR spaces.
At the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo, better known as E3, Gloveone was demoed at the Razer booth with the OSVR headset using the HDK2. Attendees were allowed to test the glove and experience the haptic motion and tracking system for themselves.
Gloveone offered a reduced price, early bird release on Kickstarter for a pair of their VR gloves that would be delivered in December of 2015 with general orders set for delivery in February of 2016. For now, though, Gloveone is still working with manufacturers to get their units out to those who helped fund the Kickstarter campaign.
See Gloveone in action in their video below: