Google is turning new mixed reality headsets invisible, kind of?

Feb 22, 2020

1 min read

Let’s be honest if you have ever watched someone wear and use a VR headset, you know how odd they can look, however Google is looking at a new mixed reality tech that removes the headset from a virtual reality experience so that spectators can actually see the wearers’ facial expressions in real time.

The technology, developed by Google Research and Google Daydream Labs, uses a combination of machine learning, 3D computer vision and advanced rendering techniques to “remove” clunky VR headsets in order to allow onlookers to see a person’s identity, focus and face in mixed reality.

“If you’re watching someone else use VR, it’s hard to tell what’s going on and what they’re seeing. And if you’re in VR with someone else, there aren’t easy ways to see their facial expressions without an avatar representation,” said Avneesh Sud, software engineer at Google Research.

Google VR tech

New Google tech allows spectators to see VR users face.

In a blog post, Google noted that this solution will go beyond improving VR and mixed reality experiences:

“Headset removal is poised to enhance communication and social interaction in VR itself with diverse applications like VR video conference meetings, multiplayer VR gaming, and exploration with friends and family. Going from an utterly blank headset to being able to see, with photographic realism, the faces of fellow VR users promises to be a significant transition in the VR world, and we are excited to be a part of it.”


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