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TECHLIFE’S PRACTICAL MONTHLY ROUNDUP OF ALL THE LATEST VIRTUAL REALITY AND AUGMENTED REALITY APPS AND EXPERIENCES, ALONGSIDE AI-DRIVEN BOTS AND OTHER USEFUL TOOLS.
WITH RUMOURS BUBBLING that Apple may be releasing it’s own HoloLens-like AR headset in 2017, it might be the year the neglected sibling of alternate technological realities becomes a thing to really get behind. Or rather, it would have been, if tech website The Information hadn’t recently revealed that much of the technology underpinning the $1.4 billion venture-capitalist-backed Magic Leap headset is still nothing more than a concept...
Never to be overshadowed, virtual reality is pushing ahead with announcements of massive improvements in smartphone VR thanks to Qualcomm’s upcoming high-end Snapdragon 835 chips, which include notably better position and orientation tracking. Add to this a partnership between Oculus and the BBC Earth team to create immersive nature documentaries, alongside the Vive’s addition of an ‘any object’ VR remote attachment and there’ll be plenty to suck you into VR this year.
Finally, AI chatbots are infiltrating and succeeding in areas that you would never expect them to, whether that’s standing-in as the man of your dreams, or providing genuine psychological evaluation and treatment to vulnerable individuals — as we’ve found this month, there is a number of surprisingly practical applications for the chatty software.