360specs: turn your smart phone into virtual reality headset
360specs: turn your smart phone into virtual reality headset
360specs are a goggles that turns a smart handheld devices into a head mounted display: 360specs put you right inside the 3D games.
360specs are a goggles that turns a smart handheld devices into a head mounted display: 360specs put you right inside the 3D games. Read more
About this project
360specs are the first product to bring virtual reality to the masses at a consumer's price.
360specs are wearable headset. They use the display of your tablet or smart phone, along with its built-in orientation sensors, to transform nearly any mobile device into a virtual reality (VR) platform.
You can use 360specs to watch a 3D movie in wide-angle, get a close-up view of your 3D photos or enjoy full-immersion gaming. We plan to produce the goggles in four sizes to accommodate mobile devices with different screen sizes—from 4-inch phones up to 7-inch tablets.
Since filing for a patent and creating our first prototype more than a year ago, we’ve been testing and refining the design of the 360specs, improving the optics, mechanics and ergonomics to make sure the goggles work well and ensure that they are easy and fun to use. Along with the 360specs, backers will receive samples of immersive games so they can test the experience.
Once we receive our funding, we’ll start production with a goal of shipping product in February 2014. Then our Kickstarter backers can enjoy full immersion in the wireless virtual reality experience.
What Are 360specs?
We’ve all heard of virtual reality, but not many people have had the chance to try this exciting technology. Now, though, anyone can experience full immersion in a virtual world. Built into a wearable headset, 360specs transform nearly any tablet or smart phone into a powerful yet inexpensive virtual reality platform. Using the display of your mobile device and its built-in orientation sensors, 360specs give you a close-up, in-depth view of your favorite apps, including social media and e-books. You can even use the specs to watch movies with a wide-angle view—wider than you’d get from a home theater system. Most exciting of all, 360specs deliver the ultimate gaming experience. Put on the headset, and 360specs place you right in the middle of the action. You’ll see more of your game world than on even the widest flat screen monitor.
Turn your head, and the view turns with you. And with the right software, you can play your game in full 3D. As soon as we reach the pledge goal, we’ll start producing versions of 360specs that are compatible with most of today’s popular smart phones and tablets. You’ll probably get the best results using a device with a screen size of 5 to 7 inches, although iPhones with screens of 3.5 to 4 inches will work, too.
What Do 360specs Do?
To give you a sense of what you’ll see when you look through a pair of 360specs, imagine using them to watch a 3D movie on a 7-inch tablet computer. You’ll feel as though you were sitting six feet away from a TV screen with a diagonal width of 130 inches. And the image on the screen will appear to be unlimited. The beauty of virtual reality is that it lets you see in all directions—in front, behind, above and below. As you turn your head, the orientation sensors built into your mobile device tell the processor which way you’re looking, and the view moves with you. Imagine sitting on a beach, gazing at the ocean, and then looking over your shoulder to get a view of the amusement pier behind you. Look down and you’ll see the sand. Look up and you’ll see the sky. That’s the view you can get with 360specs.
This is very different from the view you get when you look at the screen of a computer, tablet, smart phone or TV. Say you’re playing Halo 3 on your gaming system at home, using the TV screen mounted on your wall. You’ll see the world of Halo 3 as though you were viewing it through a window. But you’ll also see the “real” world around it—the pictures on the wall, the cat lounging on the couch. But if you could play Halo 3 with 360specs, that’s all you would see. You’d be completely inside the world of the game. Besides getting the full-immersion experience, with 360specs you can move around in virtual space. To look around you, turn your head. To walk forward, backward or to the side, use a small, handheld game controller.
One of the most amazing things about virtual reality is the way it can transport us to a vast variety of different worlds. You might use it someplace familiar, like a local mall or park. But it can also whisk you off to the streets of Rio, the peaks of Nepal, the surface of Mars, the battlefields of Middle Earth, or worlds yet to be imagined. Think of the vast variety of computer games and movies available today. It won’t be long before developers start creating VR versions of those media. In the past, to experience virtual reality, you had to spend thousands of dollars on a system, or find one in a game arcade. Soon, 360specs will make VR affordable and available to the masses. We’re packaging sample applications with the goggles, so you’ll be ready to enjoy the thrill of full immersion as soon as you open the box. We’ll also offer software development kits (SDKs), so developers can bring new applications to the market, and optimize existing ones for use with 360specs.
How do I use 360specs?
1. Choose an application developed for 360specs and launch it on your tablet or smart phone.
2. Slide your mobile device into the bracket on the 360specs headset.
3. Place the goggles over your eyes, secure the strap on your head and then enjoy total immersion in a VR experience, game or 3D movie.
4. When you’re done, take off the 360specs and remove the mobile device from the bracket to use it for regular applications.
What can I do with 360specs right now?
• Place yourself in the center of the game you’re playing, using the 3D orientation sensor in your mobile device to track your gaze as you turn your head. Add a game pad to walk through the world, shoot, etc.
• Take a virtual walk-through to check out buildings from the inside--houses for sale, apartment for rent, 3D building plans, museums and more.
• Watch 3D movies and view 3D photos. (Movies and photos must have been created for stereoscopic viewing) /
What will I be able to do with 360specs in the future?
Someday you’ll be able to use 360specs for augmented reality applications, to read e-books and magazines. You may also use it to run many of the applications that we typically run on personal computers. Today’s smart phones and tablets are more powerful than the PCs most of us used five years ago, and much more powerful than the computers used to create the original “Star Wars” movie. Eventually, you’ll be able to use your mobile device and 360specs to type and edit text, work with spreadsheets, draw, sculpt, create 3D models or create games. The key is to create the right interface. We believe that 360specs will eventually provide the foundation for new interactive manipulators, which will be more natural than the keyboards, mice and touch pads we use today. Pair a small, mobile device with goggles that provide a few wider than you’d get on any desktop system, and you have the perfect combination--a full-scale productivity system that you can carry with you anywhere.
What can I not do with 360specs?
You cannot walk around while wearing 360specs. You’ll be fully immersed in virtual space, with no view at all of the “real” world. That puts you at serious risk of walking into a wall or falling down stairs if you try to go anywhere. If you want to walk while wearing 360specs, we recommend that you stay within a small space, secured by a barrier. Or even better, use them while sitting in a swivel chair to get a full 360-degree view without risk.
Some specifications and technical details
We plan to produce the 360specs in four sizes to accommodate mobile devices with different screen sizes—less than 4 inches, 4 to 5 inches, 5 to 6 inches, and 6 to 7 inches. You can customize 360specs to suit your individual needs: fit the glasses to your head, sharpen the view by adjusting the distance from the optical lens to the device screen, move the optical axis of the lens to suit the distance between your eyes. You can also make adjustments in your software application to make the virtual environment look more true to life. A family sharing one pair of 360specs can adjust the goggles for use by an adult or by a child. But, of course, you might want to keep multiple pairs in the house, so there’s never any squabbling over whose turn it is to strap them on.
VR for consumers—at last
360specs were created by Ray Latypov, inventor of the Virtusphere, 10-foot hollow sphere that rotates freely in all directions, allowing a user to walk and run while wearing a head-mounted VR display. When we demonstrated the Virtusphere at trade shows, we found that most people had never had a chance to try a head-mounted display. Fifteen years ago, everyone was saying that VR would be the next big thing. But for a number of reasons--both technical and financial--that hasn’t happened. 360specs will finally make fully-immersive virtual reality available to the consumer market.
We started our work on the 360specs by designing the optics and mechanics to work with different kinds of smart devices, and by filing for a patent to cover the new technology. About a year ago, we created the first hand made prototype, as a proof of concept. We used a 3D printer to create several more prototype versions.
Since then, we’ve been testing and refining the product, improving the optics, mechanics and ergonomics to make the 360specs work well and ensure that they are easy and fun to use. We’ve experimented with different head mounting approaches and created mechanisms that allow users to adjust the goggles for individual use and comfort.
We’ve also worked with our manufacturer to refine the design with production needs in mind, ensuring that we can produce a high-quality product at an affordable price. Our next step is to start the tooling. To move forward with manufacturing, we need help from our backers on Kickstarter. When we complete our first manufacturing run, we’ll deliver your 360specs, and you can enjoy full immersion in the wireless virtual reality experience.
Our next step is to determine where the demand will be for 360specs--which types and sizes of mobile devices should get the highest priority. Based on that, we’ll order the necessary injection molding tools. About eight weeks later, we’ll be ready to start test production runs. We should be able to move to full production by December 2013. Here’s the timeline:
• September-October: Our manufacturing partner in China will work with professional mechanical engineers and designers to complete the final pre-production prototype. These engineers and designers have long experience in production for the consumer market. We will then test the pre-production prototype in the field to make sure that the product, as we’ve designed it, is usable and durable.
• November: The factory will complete tooling for injection molding and conduct the first tests. We are confident that we can achieve this tooling milestone because our manufacturer has worked with major consumer brands, both in the U.S. and in Europe, on designs that are similar to ours, if not more challenging. Third-party manufacturing service firms that have reviewed our timeline also assure us that our timeline is realistic.
• December: We will complete the final engineering prototypes, as well as the final design for packaging.
• December-January: Production begins. Our manufacturer’s large facility can produce as many as 10,000 units per week, if need be. Based on its track record with major consumer brands, we are certain that it will do an excellent job on our behalf.
• February-March: We will ship the product to our backers.
How Do We Know The Project Will Succeed?
The optical engineers, mechanical engineers, industrial designers and manufacturing specialists who have advised us throughout the project are extremely knowledgeable and good at what they do. We also have full confidence in our contract manufacturer. We ourselves have a great deal of experience developing software.
Manufacturing: Our manufacturing partner has produced toys and other consumer products for several major U.S. brands, so we know that its work is top-quality. When the first products come off the line, we’ll be there to check them and test their performance, to ensure that the product we sell meets our own high standards, and yours.
Shipping Date: We developed our production timeline based on reasonable estimates for each phase of the project, considering the capabilities and capacity of our manufacturing partner and input from our manufacturing advisors. We’ve built in a little extra time to allow for any unexpected contingencies.
We will do everything in our power to ship on time. No matter what, we promise to keep all of our Kickstarter backers informed and involved in the baking process!
• 360specs - immersive virtual reality at home for less then $70.
• The 360specs wearable headset will turn your smart gadget into a VR platform.
• You can use 360specs for full-immersion gaming and to watch 3D movies. They have been fully tested for these applications.
• 360specs will accommodate most smart phones and 7-inch tablets.
• Users can adjust the 360specs for comfort and to sharpen the image.
• Once we receive our funding, we’ll start production with a goal of shipping product in February 2014.
• Combine 360specs with your wireless mobile device to enjoy full immersion in the virtual reality experience.
Risks and challenges
Manufacturing a physical product isn’t easy, of course. Any manufacturing startup is bound to encounter some hiccups. We’ve prepared ourselves for those challenges and have built extra time into the schedule for dealing with unforeseen issues. We'll do everything in our power to ship on time, but our first priority is product quality. We promise to keep all of our Kickstarter backers up to date on our progress.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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