Image:-XRSPACE MOVA is standalone headset like the Oculus Quest, but is only operated with the hands and also supports 4G and 5G.
The Mova is a self-contained headset powered by an 845 processor from Qualcomm Snapdragon. It looks similar to the Oculus Quest or the business-oriented HTC Vive Focus, though it is more slick than either of them, giving users a choice of white or bright orange. It uses two cameras to track the movement of users around a room, and its default control system is hand tracking, a feature that is still relatively rare in major VR headsets, though it was only officially added to this month's Oculus Quest. Beyond that, the Mova specs that we got before the official announcement today are extremely vague.
Meanwhile Manova looks kind of like Second Life crossed with one of the social VR experiments on Facebook. According to XRSpace, it will contain a variety of public and private locations including individual "home" hangout areas or viewing party spaces, neighborhood-like areas such as a "city center" where people can meet with friends, and a place called MagicLohas which will include fitness classes and other healthy activities. There are also links to games and apps made by third parties.
Mova and Manova are a package deal: the world of XRSpace is only available via its headset, and the headset will not support other VR storefronts. XRSpace should also have its own accessory ecosystem, including optional hand-held controllers and tracking sensors, described as much smaller versions of the Vive Tracker from HTC.
Meet XRSpace, a company led by former HTC head Peter Chou, plans to launch a new virtual reality headset later this year. The headset is dubbed the Mova, and it's supposed to ship in the third quarter of 2020 for $599.#Immersivetechafrica #VirtualReality pic.twitter.com/ZviEQM4mRY— Arome Ibrahim (@aromeibrahim_) May 26, 2020
I haven't seen either of these products in action, so XRSpace can deliver on its promises. That said, this seems like a significant risk to the company and anyone buying the headset, even making the enormous assumption that its hardware is on par with existing devices such as the Quest.
VR has converged between software platforms and headsets into a model with lots of crossover. Other than the HTC Viveport store, HTC's Vive Cosmos encourages owners to use Valve's SteamVR. The Oculus Quest standalone can turn into a PC-tethered headset while SteamVR supports almost any wired headset. VR is a small market and the more content any hardware can access, the greater the reason for buying it.
So no controllers for XRSPACE MOVA, but it seems there are dedicated motion sensors for its training software?? pic.twitter.com/EvnRNKmDtj— Kevin Pan (@rereflux) May 26, 2020
Meanwhile, many companies, including Second Life operator Linden Lab with Sansar and Linden Lab founder Philip Rosedale with the largely shuttered High Fidelity, have failed to launch Manova-like virtual universes. Chou believes that Manova can be successful where Sansar and High Fidelity have failed because of their "fine tuned" nature.
"I think the difference is that they first designed those things based on the PC, and then tried to put them on VR," he says. "They don't have a good digital avatar and they don't have a holistic view of the mass-market consumer using it." But that's still an iffy bet, especially for a device that costs far more than Oculus Quest's highly capable $399!
The partnerships with third-party apps are not that exciting to date, either. It's a short list that includes VR viewer applications like Getty Images alongside games like Angry Birds VR: Isle of Pigs. XRSpace has cut partnership dealings with Deutsche Telecom in Germany and Chunghwa Telecom in Taiwan, which could help to subsidize user costs. That said, it's not clear how useful a 5 G cellular connection will be, as VR headsets are used overwhelmingly with Wi-Fi in homes or other indoor spaces.
One of the biggest advantages of the Mova may simply be availability, depending on the specifics of its headset. XRSpace apparently delayed the launch for two months due to the coronavirus pandemic, but Chou says mass production started for an initial rollout in Taiwan this month. Launches should follow throughout Europe , China and the US. The Oculus Quest is still only sporadically available, so it would not be impossible for XRSpace to find a space in the market with more evidence of good hardware and a software ecosystem, so the Mova launch actually happens as planned.
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