1. Augmented Reality Makeup Technology from ModiFace
The company known for facial-recognition, ModiFace, presented its 3D Augmented Reality Makeup and Anti-Aging Mirror at 2014 CES conference. The mirror can help women try different makeup products in real-time. It’s intended to used in malls, beauty clinics and plastic surgeons’ practices. The interesting part is that the system generates a variety of shades for different beauty items like the blush, eye shadow and many more, it also gives you an anti-wrinkle cream. Women can try them and remove them in a single click.
The technology will come in the format of a standalone retail kiosk with a touchscreen monitor and camera, as well as a mobile app that can be used on a tablet at counters, or on consumers’ tablets and smartphones.
“If you have this at a Clinique or a Loreal counter, your chances of conversion are much higher,” said Parham Aarabi, ModiFace’s founder and CEO, “So at retail stores, we can actually have something innovative, when someone walks by, they can see themselves with makeup or lipstick. It’s good enough to get them interested, and the chance of them buying grows dramatically.”
Oculus VR has been showing off a new version of its virtual reality technology at the Consumer Electronics Show. According to Vice President of Product Nate Mitchell, the “Crystal Cove” prototype features two big improvements — positional tracking and low persistence. VR headset prototypes had some problems such as nausea inducing motion blur as well as tracking problems. With the ‘Crystal Cove’, many of these problems have finally been solved with the addition of sensors to track the position of a user’s head and torso.
“Cost has always been at the crux of the entire Oculus platform, if the hardware is not affordable, it might as well not exist. We made sure this is a low-cost solution without sacrificing any quality,” tells Nate Mitchell, the VP of Product at Oculus. “This is a top-notch positional tracking system.”
The positional tracking system will be included in the cost of the hardware, and will not be a separate purchase. This hardware will add an extra three degrees of movement to the hardware, allowing the player to move their head in 3D space.
Following the release of the Crystal Cove model, Valve announces SteamVR, an Oculus Rift mode for Steam gaming client. SteamVR actually puts the Steam client interface in Rift mode, displayed as a giant floating curved-screen UI, complete with head-tracking support. For those interested in trying out SteamVR, you’ll need the beta version of the Steam client and an Oculus Rift development kit.
You can also read about the experiments with Oculus Rift headset and AR House from Augmented Pixels here.
3. Turkish Bank Introduces an App with Augmented Reality
Turkish bank, Akbank, has released an official mobile app called Akbank Direkt that includes augmented reality. The idea might seem a bit unusual for Turkey, but the app has already accumulated numerous positive reviews from consumers.
The app was created for Windows Phone, and uses a pin-point accurate method to help users locate the nearest ATM, exposing the most hard-to-spot machines. In addition, the app comes with a fully featured currency converter alongside secure registration and single password login.
From transferring funds to reviewing transactions made on a specific day, customers with Akbank can also take out personal loans, pay bills and more with this free app available in the Windows Phone Store.
4. Google Glass App That Helps You Be a Safer Driver
DriveSafe is a new app for Google’s wearable headset that uses the sensors inside Glass to detect if you’re nodding off while driving. The app can be download via DriveSafe’s website and will need to be sideloaded onto the device as it is not yet supported by the companion app, MyGlass. Users then say “OK Glass, keep me awake” to enable the app as they are about to begin driving. The app works via an infrared sensor and a tilt sensor. While the infrared sensor detects eyelid movement, the tilt sensor picks up on if your head starts lolling about as you begin to doze off. In addition, DriveSafe can integrate with Glass’ navigation capabilities to direct tired drivers to the nearest rest area.
5. Activatar App Turns Every NYC Metrocard into a 3D Exhibition Space
ActivatAR, a project by Christopher Manzione the founder of the Virtual Public Art Project, uses a custom iphone app to host monthly shows on top of the New York City Metrocard and other ubiquitous public accessible imagery. It employs Augmented reality to view the physical real-world environment merged with virtual computer-generated imagery in real-time in the viewfinder of your smart phone.
The first show will feature the 3D sculptural works by artist Michael Rees titled “New Yup”. The sculpture consists of two components: an image zooming into the universe and a rotating wireframe sculpture that moves more slowly through and around the moving image.