Currently for most virtual reality (VR) users moving through virtual worlds usually involves whatever locomotion system the developer has chosen to implement. That can be teleportation, roomscale, fixed point-to-point teleportation, or direct locomotion for example. But ever since the first headsets arrive there have been companies looking to make that experience more immersive and natural with equipment like an omni-direction treadmill or foot-based controllers. The latest comes from Australian company Visospace which is looking to raise funds on Indiegogo for its Alto100 motion controller.
The Alto100 is an omni-directional controller platform that aims to make virtual experiences comfortable without the side effects of motion sickness whilst giving users full control over where they go.
Alto isn’t just about freedom of movement in VR as it features haptic feedback as well. Visospace explains that when you put on a headset you can still see the Alto in the VR world. Stepping onto it, you then shift your weight in the direction you want to go, and doing this more so increases the speed. If you go over a bump or for example a rock on a road you’ll then feel that through your feet.
Designed to work with all VR, augmented reality (AR) and 3D platforms the Alto will suit applications across a range of industries. The Indiegogo campaign is to raise funds for the dev kit model, aimed more towards developer, beta testers and early adopters. Visospace is looking to raise $10,000 AUD and has almost achieved its goal sitting at $8,405 at the time of writing.
“Imagine the web implemented in VR,” said Dr. Puya Abolfathi, CEO and co-founder of Visospace. “You need a way to move in that space believably and seamlessly. The Alto is like a mouse for your body in immersive VR and AR environments right now, but it’s also the user interface for the internet of the future.”
“We are in an apex moment for many technologies, especially immersive computing like AR, VR, and Mixed Reality,” Abolfathi adds. “Soon we will replace our phones and laptops with these immersive technologies because they are going to enrich our lives. The Alto is the only device that can deliver the kind of natural movement needed to experience intuitive, limitless immersion.”
There’s only one backing tier for the Alto100, at $790 ($600 USD) plus shipping. This will get you the limited edition dev kit and everything you need to get started, with an estimated shipping date of September 2018. As the Indiegogo campaign draws to a close VRFocus will keep you updated.