YEI Technology Talk PrioVR: Past, Present and Future
YEI Technology’s PrioVR originally made it’s debut on Kickstarter late in 2013, however despite a genuinely fascination showcase of the technology and some reasonably priced reward tiers the device failed to reach even half it’s finance target. The developer relaunched the Kickstarter earlier this month and VRFocus is happy to say that it’s performing a little better this time around, smashing it’s funding goal within the first 24 hours.
This success could easily breed contentment, but having already been knocked-back YEI Technology aren’t about to rest on their laurels. Some new stretch goals have been announced and new plans for the future of the PrioVR have been revealed. VRFocus recently discussed the PrioVR device, it’s unenviable past and it’s potentially groundbreaking future, and much more besides. You can still support the PrioVR on Kickstarter and VRFocus will keep you updated with all the latest from YEI Technology.
VRFocus: There are a number of full-body motion-control devices currently attempting to find their way to market. What makes the PrioVR different?
YEI Technology: PrioVR is different in that it combines the best parts of existing full-body motion-control devices into one easy to use accessory. Its wireless, works without any base stations or other required peripheral, is free of line-of-sight restrictions, provides lag-free high-accuracy performance, and supports a virtually unlimited capture space.
VRFocus: How does the technology used in the PrioVR compare to existing motion-control devices? I.e. Kinect and Wii Remotes?
YEI Technology: PrioVR uses a system of inertial sensors that detect the body’s movements while the Kinect uses an optical system that has to first “see” the body’s movements and then interpret them. The Wii Remote uses a combination of motion sensors and an infrared optical sensor to tell which way the remote is pointing but cannot tell anything about how the user’s body is positioned.
The inertial sensor method used in PrioVR allows users to accurately translate their movements into a game without having to stay within view of a camera or move a remote and can’t be confused by coffee tables, pets, lighting changes, or other people.
VRFocus: Are there any essential components that are required for PrioVR before installation? A camera or additional lighting, for example.
YEI Technology: PrioVR will come with everything you need to connect to your PC. No cameras or other accommodations of any kind are necessary.
VRFocus: What is the maximum number of PrioVR users that will be supported in videogame titles?
YEI Technology: PrioVR itself doesn’t have any limitations as to how many users can be supported. Limitations in games would be up to the games themselves.
VRFocus: What packages will be available to consumers upon the launch of PrioVR?
YEI Technology: There will be 3 versions of PrioVR available:
PrioVR Core – This will be the standard version of PrioVR – perfect for getting immersed in your favorite game
PrioVR Lite – Upper body only for die-hard couch potatoes
PrioVR Pro – Additional sensors on the shoulders, torso, and feet give game developers and motion capture enthusiasts more control
VRFocus: Do you intend to launch all of these packages internationally?
YEI Technology: Yes. We will allow international backers on Kickstarter.
VRFocus: Will there be any noticeable difference in detection quality between the various packages?
YEI Technology: No, all 3 suit options provide the same level of accuracy.
VRFocus: What videogame titles will be compatible with the PrioVR?
YEI Technology: We have developers working on games that will ship with the Kickstarter, and are talking to game studios about making their games compatible with PrioVR. We will release more information as those relationships are formalized.
VRFocus: What types of videogame do you feel are best suited to the PrioVR?
YEI Technology: Well naturally everybody wants to jump into zombie-killing action However, there are also great opportunities to finally make DDR-style games a truly great home experience. And we envision games being extended to movement-based play options that have never been possible before.
VRFocus: Will there be the opportunity for indie developers to create their own software for use with the PrioVR?
YEI Technology: Absolutely. We are offering a developer-focused reward tier which will include open-source example code as well as one-on-one support from our development team.
VRFocus: Which videogame engines does PrioVR support at present?
YEI Technology: PrioVR will support Unity3D, UDK, and CryENGINE and will include an API for integration into other platforms.
VRFocus: What made you decide to return to Kickstarter after the initial attempt proved unsuccessful?
YEI Technology: We received remarkable feedback that helped us learn what the community was looking for and how we could best shape PrioVR to meet those needs. For example, we repeatedly heard that people wanted an upper body only version which was not originally in our Kickstarter. We have also been able to continue development in the interim, and with our “try it for yourself” booths at CES, GDC and SxSW, people have a much higher comfort level for the technology and our ability to deliver as promised.