Do you wanna know what the business where you make billions in the coming years? Virtual reality and augmented reality. Whether are 3D viewers like those of Oculus Rift or digital platform like Project Sansar that shortly Linden Lab will open to the first alpha testers, rather than glasses like the Google Glass (for now destined to remain suspended), startups projects under development that are getting the most substantial funds worldwide (even, albeit timidly, in Italy) now concern mainly this area.
CastAR, one of the startups who raised million dollars
The latest example among the startups active in augmented reality able to have received a “substantial” funding is CastAR, which raised 15 million dollars from the creator of Android, Andy Rubin. In addition to money Rubin leads to CastAR (startup of Mountain View wich seems not to be afraid by the idea of having to compete with giants like Google and Facebook) new office spaces, technological expertise and tons of important relationships.
These are important in the US as in Italy: the money is important, but if you can not enter the “big business” you will never be a “big“, for this reason not all lenders and incubators are equal (and unfortunately for this reason startups in the US or England will continue to have an edge over Italy). To be able to have capital and important relationships you need to be ready to change a lot and very quickly.
CastAR, for instance, was born as Technical Illusion in Seattle, on the initiative of two technicians from Valve, Jeri Ellsworth and Rick Johnson, to develop augmented reality glasses, a business in which Valve had not believed inducing the two engineers to leave the company to form their own startup.
In November 2013 the two had already collected the first million dollars thanks to fundraising on Kickstarter, Now they have decided to move the company in the Silicon Valley and change the name and it seems to have worked.
Image rear-projected on the lenses of glasses
The idea of CastAR is to rear–project images on the lenses of the glasses. In this way, the wearer will have the impression of having a virtual screen and you will feel immersed in a video game, but will always remain in contact with the world around him/her.
That’s because, although it could theoretically reconstruct the entire environment surrounding the subject, CastAR device propose only a (virtual) screen like those of video games that usually we use on our smart phones.
The commercial launch of the eyewear CastAR, that might be of interest not only fans of video games but also engineers and technicians that could be used for professional applications, is expected during the next year, which therefore promises (especially for the expected arrival of the retail version of the Oculus Rift Viewer) as the year of takeoff of virtual reality.
If any Italian is interested in, please do not wait too much before launching your own idea, for all other wh wanna keep in touch with further development of virtual reality, the advice is just to follow Mondivirtuali.it, even through our account on Twitter and our fanpage on Facebook (but remember: Mondivirtuali is also on Flickr, on Pinterest, on Scoop.it e su Paper.li and also on Youtube).